No company is perfect. Not even yours. There is always something to improve on. And that is a good thing. Those flaws keep you on your toes and if you have the right mindset for it and you love a good challenge every now and then, you can consider it as the fun part of running a business.
One aspect of the company that you can improve is the team culture. As I have mentioned in one of my previous articles, Building a Winning Team Culture, team culture is the sum of the beliefs, values and attitudes shared by the team members. Since a team is composed of different individuals with different personalities and attitudes, there is a tendency that bad habits will form overtime. It can start with one or two members and would then rub off onto their teammates thus becoming part of the team culture. If left unchecked, it can negatively affect the team and in turn your company. As the business owner, the challenge is to look out for these bad habits and change them. It is not easy to change a deeply ingrained habit in the team but it is never too late to change it.
Choosing What to Add or Change
Changing or adding a value in the existing team culture is a long process. It can take months or years depending on how deeply ingrained the value is. Since it can take a lot of time and effort, let’s make sure that those resources are not wasted. Carefully consider which value is worth adding or changing. Think how big of an impact it can make in the team. Ask yourself if adding or changing a value can come into conflict with some of the existing values in the team culture. Careful consideration and forward thinking are essential when making this decision.
Keep on Repeating
If you want a value to sink in to the team, you need to keep on repeating it. A team meeting is not the only way to remind the team, you can use different mediums to get the point across. You can use e-mail to talk about it or tell stories that are related to that value or habit. You can even build a company event around it. Be creative and fun when going about it. You may sound like a broken record, but you will achieve the results that you are aiming for.
Lead by Example
You are the leader and the team culture is not something that is posted on the wall or a fancy presentation. It’s your team’s core values and attitudes on how you face challenges. If you want the team to adopt a new value or remove an existing one, then you as the team leader should lead by example. Show them how you live by those values and how to apply them.