By Jason Richmond, CEO and Chief Culture Officer of Ideal Outcomes, Inc.
Workplace culture is important for a variety of reasons. It can impact employee morale, job satisfaction, and even productivity. Unfortunately, not all workplace cultures are positive or healthy.
If your company is experiencing any of the five signs highlighted below, it may be time for a culture change. But before we talk about these telltale signs, let’s go over some of the fundamentals of workplace culture.
The Basics of Workplace Culture
Workplace culture includes the values, beliefs, and attitudes of the company and its employees. A healthy company culture is one where employees feel valued, respected, and supported. They should also feel like they have a voice within the company.
One effective methodology found in successful workplaces is creating a community culture. When a workforce feels like it’s part of a community, you’re going to see employees engaged in the projects they’re working on. There’s a real sense of belonging that you can’t emulate artificially. But a community culture is only one approach to cultural change.
Equally important are diversity and inclusion. This is true regardless of background, race, orientation, or any other attribute. People who genuinely feel welcome among their peers are far more likely to be productive team members.
And when the workplace is diverse, you can often tap into insights and ideas that you wouldn’t have thought of otherwise. Diversity allows for the sharing of unique perspectives, which supports the potential for greater growth.
The Importance of Positive Workplace Culture
A positive workplace culture has several benefits that can affect a company’s future. For one, it can improve employee retention. When you have a high turnover rate, it costs your company time and money to constantly train new employees. Not to mention, it can be disruptive to the rest of the team.
Studies show that employee turnover can cost companies up to 33% of a single employee’s yearly salary if they decide to leave and need to be replaced with a new hire. Let’s say you have an employee earning $50,000 a year. They leave the company, and you need to replace them. It could cost you approximately $16,500 to do so. This becomes even more problematic when multiple employees leave the organization and you need to fill multiple positions.
So, if you want to save your company some time and money, focus on creating a positive workplace culture. You’ll effectively reduce or even prevent turnover altogether, equaling big savings for your bottom line.
Positive workplace cultures can also lead to increased productivity. Employees who feel valued and supported are more likely to be engaged in their work. And when employees are engaged, they’re more likely to produce high-quality work and less likely to call in sick or take extended breaks. Not only will you get high-quality output from your employees, but you’ll get it more often.
This kind of consistency is what every company dreams of, and it can lead to great things for everyone. An unhealthy culture, on the other hand, can lead to low morale, high turnover rates, and even legal issues.
Now that we’ve reviewed what workplace culture is, let’s take a look at some of the signs that your company may need a culture change.
5 Signs Your Workplace Culture Needs to Change
1. There’s a high turnover rate.
One of the most obvious signs that something’s wrong with your current culture is a high turnover rate. If employees are constantly leaving, it’s a sign that they’re not happy. There are a number of reasons why employees may leave, but one of the most common is because they don’t feel valued.
If your company’s culture doesn’t make employees feel like they’re valued, they’re likely to look for somewhere else to work. A high turnover rate can also be a sign of poor communication, which is a clear indication of a broken company culture.
2. There’s a lack of engagement
Another sign that your work culture could use some improvement is a lack of engagement from employees. There are several ways to measure employee engagement, but one of the most common is through surveys. You can also look at things like absenteeism and turnover rates.
If you notice that fewer and fewer employees are completing surveys or that engagement scores are consistently low, it’s a sign that something needs to change. Employees need to know that they’re being heard, and employee engagement issues should be addressed right away.
3. Employee morale is low
This is a big red flag for any company, and it’s another sign that your work culture could use some improvement.
If you notice that employees are constantly calling in sick or that morale is consistently low, something needs to change. So many organizations face this problem, but you can’t demand compliance or morale. Leaders are on the front line and should be the first line of defense against low morale.
4. There’s a lack of communication
This is one of the most common signs that something is wrong with your company culture. As we discussed above, employees who feel like they can’t communicate openly with their managers—whether middle managers or the managing director—often become frustrated to the point that they quit.
A lack of communication can also lead to a lack of trust, which we’ll discuss below.
5. There’s a lack of trust
Trust is vital in any business. If employees don’t feel like they can trust anyone in the office, they’re likely to become disengaged and eventually leave. Together, a lack of trust and communication can have devastating consequences on a business. To overcome this, you need to try different things—innovative things—to restore the shared perception among your team.
The bottom line is: positive workplace culture change can drive business growth. But if you don’t take steps to build a thriving culture, it can halt your company’s success.
It’s important to note that change is a process—it doesn’t happen overnight. It’s going to take some real work to promote new behaviors and practices. But with the right approach, you can win over the collective hearts of your team and improve the employee experience, as well as your organization’s culture.
So, what is the right approach? What can you do to encourage optimism in your business and among your team?
Achieving Your Ideal Outcome
If you know that you need an organizational change, it’s important to carefully evaluate the problems you’re facing. In some instances, radical action may be needed to promote a new culture. In other instances, a strategy with incremental steps might be the best approach. It all depends on the condition of your workplace.
As someone directly involved with your workplace, you might be overlooking key issues. This is where a professional, outside perspective can assist you in identifying red flags.
At Ideal Outcomes, we specialize in successful organizational culture change. Our goal is to create clarity so that you can see where you stand as a company. We can help you develop a roadmap that details a strategy for success. When you partner with us, we don’t just hand you a list of top tips and let you handle it alone; instead, we keep you accountable to change and help you every step of the way.
Don’t let a poor workplace culture disrupt your business. Get in touch with us today to get started on your road to success.