5 Ways to Change Workplace Culture Today

What can you do to change workplace culture? You might be surprised. It takes a meeting or two, but the benefits far outweigh the risks._


5 Ways to Change Workplace Culture Without Risking a Thing_


To change workplace culture, we said last time, is among the most important and lasting contributions any manager can make. It sounds more difficult than it is, but those who succeed are still going to be recognized as if they were true cultural icons, at least within the company.

Here’s the five things you need to do to change your workplace culture starting today.

1) Stop the idea of non-skilled workers.  Root it out and get rid of it. Follow our steps to employee satisfaction, closely, carefully, and the result will be skilled employees. Satisfied employees reached the goals you helped them to set out for themselves, and all of them became skilled employees in the process. They know they are valuable, self-evaluating and more satisfied people.

2) Worry about Environment. We’ve gone on about this in the past, but give your employees some say in the whole thing. It doesn’t mean a foozeball table. Group break areas and public areas are important but they’re not everything. Make sure your people have some say and can customize how things are arranged and how they look and feel. Open floorplans are everywhere, but they aren’t the answer to everything.

3) Adults Only. That should sound bold. And it is. Make sure that all of your people get the idea and act accordingly. But especially management need to know that skilled employees expect to be treated like adults. Some of your old school managers may still be following the old “School-Marm Knows Best” policy. Treating your superiors like grown-ups and your “underlings” like children needs to go out the door. If not, then your managers need to be seeing the door.

4) Bring Everyone on Board. Just like we always say, communicate clearly, make sure everyone gets the message and articulate a vision based on values and common purpose. If every company did that there wouldn’t be engagement levels across the board at 30% and lower. There are literally companies still somehow functioning where absolutely every employee hates the boss, is indifferent to the product and couldn’t care less if the company went bankrupt tomorrow. That’s not where you want to be working. Even if you really are in a nasty business you can improve the internal thinking and make it work.

5) To change workplace culture really does require culture. It doesn’t need to be HIGH CULTURE, but it should be human culture, popular culture and everyday people culture. Think about all of the above with reference not only to work-life-balance but with reference to books and music, visual arts and communications, and to the fact that all of your people have preferences and tastes. They like being exposed to things as a group that they can’t find out on their own or individually. An organization like yours is the perfect place to orchestrate exposure, conversation and participation in many of the things that people often come together to share. Don’t make it complicated. Sports and fitness work, encourage them, and reward employees with real flexible work hours and freedom.

These are all topics for your company newsletter or for your training and expectations-building seminars. Don’t settle for less.

Image this page: Wikimedia Commons, Desert Flowers, by Rennet Stowe

Karin Jakovljevic

About the author

Karin Jakovljevic

Karin Jakovljevic is the head of marketing at Ximble, a powerful, cloud-based workforce management system, simplifying employee scheduling and time tracking for retailers, restaurants and small businesses.

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