The ABCs of Driving a Performing Team Culture

Research shows that companies with great team culture outperform their competitors. Why? Because having a healthy organizational culture makes employees happier, more productive, and less likely to leave.

Team culture evolves over time. If left unchecked, it can become a negative force, and, when that happens, employee engagement and performance begin to suffer. But, with the right management strategy, teams can successfully transform and improve their organizational culture.

“People are accountable for their work and own their stuff. No assholes.” — Bogdan Lucaciu, CTO Adore Me

Assessing the culture within an organization is a crucial first step in guaranteeing success because it helps identify the areas for improvement. A more in-depth analysis will reveal the strengths and the positive cultural aspects teams should keep. The results from a thorough assessment will help managers set a strategy, concrete objectives, and a plan of action for transforming the culture.

But saying this is one thing, and actually doing it is another. So, what’s the secret behind building a great team culture?

5 steps to building a great team culture

1. Getting to know the team

It seems like an obvious thing to do, but sometimes it’s overlooked. Getting to know all team members strengthens the team and helps build a great culture. 

This involves celebrating birthdays, promotions, and holidays as a team. Managers can also encourage friendship by organizing occasional potlucks and eating lunch together. 

While developing relationships, things like strengths, weaknesses, and skills yet to be developed will become more prominent. Leaders should take the time to learn how to motivate each team member to go beyond what’s expected of them.

“There is no such thing as a self-made man. You will reach your goals only with the help of others.” — George Shinn

2. Giving feedback to team members

Constructive feedback is one of the best ways to help teammates continue to improve. Feedback is most impactful when it’s informal and part of an ongoing dialogue. Since we are all different, the method for delivering feedback to each team member should also be different. 

That’s why developing healthy relationships with each team member is important. When people trust you, they will take your suggestions to heart because they know you have their best interests in mind. 

It’s also important to not wait until a problem occurs to give feedback. Instead, managers should make a habit of regularly letting team members know how they’re doing and what could be improved. And communication should work two-ways, meaning managers should listen to their teammates’ feedback as well.

3. Regularly meeting with team members

Weekly meetings make a big difference in a team’s culture. That’s because regular meetings build rapport, encourage productivity, and bring the importance of improving the team to the forefront. During those meetings, the team should focus on discussing problems and coming up with solutions.

To ensure they are running smoothly, meetings should be scheduled in advance and have a clear agenda that everyone is aware of beforehand. This will help everyone not to lose sight of the primary objective of the meeting and not allow the discussion to be derailed by other topics that are not on the agenda. 

Having clearly defined roles for meetings also helps; for example, one team member could act as a timekeeper while another takes notes on the discussion. 

“Company culture is the continuous pursuit of building the best, most talented, and happiest team we possibly can.” — Andrew Wilkinson

4. Promoting a culture of learning

Great team culture is great for business! A strong team has a sense of ownership over planning, problem-solving, and goal-setting. When a team is focused on a collective vision, each team member can fulfill their individual roles better. 

Leaders should promote a culture of learning where every team member is encouraged to continue expanding their skill sets. This can be done by providing access to ongoing training and personal development. 

Encouraging ongoing learning and goal achievement prevents team members from becoming complacent or bored in their positions. Moreover, it allows them to learn new skills that add value to the whole team. When team members have access to the tools they need to move forward in their careers, they become more engaged and create a stronger work environment.

5. Creating a vision

Having a group of people focus on a collective effort is a key part of developing a strong team. And for that, individuals need a compelling purpose. People cannot be forced to become part of a team, they need to feel they belong and contribute. 

The job of a leader is to create a vision and a plan for how the team will achieve it. Each member of a team needs to understand how their contribution fits into the bigger picture. And this vision has to be continually reinforced. Managers need to find ways to infuse the sense of purpose on an ongoing basis so the team can continue to grow.

 

Curious to find out what’s the secret behind building a great team culture? Join us at How to Web Conference 2019 on the 30th & 31st of October to connect with some of the most amazing leaders in the world. Get your early bird ticket here: https://www.howtoweb.co/buy-tickets/.

Illustration credits: vecteezy.com

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