- Communication between departments is negative.
- Not everyone is on the same page.
- Independent attitudes versus team attitudes.
- People are reserved during meetings, fearful of sharing what they truly think.
- Everyone wants to prove they are right.
- Animosity among managers.
- Cliques in the office.
- Lack of respect between departments.
- Everyone pushes against one another instead of pulling for one another.
The negative examples listed above are what I am presented with most when working on culture development. And I am confident some of these statements hit home for many reading this article.
So…How Does Ths Happen?
If an organization or corporation has any of this negativeness, it always goes back to the leadership team or should I say “lack” of a leadership team. All successes within an organization are based upon the quality of leadership and the skills of relationship building.
That is why I always begin my culture-development training with a strong leadership training series. I have found if leaders understand how they are to influence others—and why it is important to influence people in the correct way—it softens them to learn a new skill set encompassed around relationships.
Serving on a board with Mr. Bill Marriott Jr. provided me the opportunity to visit with him one on one. In my four decades of traveling—whether in Moscow, Budapest, the United States, or places in between—I have yet to find poor quality within Marriott hotels. The staff is above average and the culture is positive. So, I asked Mr. Marriott to define the secret of his successful hotels.
His quick response was, “It is the result of my General Managers. Grade points and former employment mean very little, but if a person has great relationship skills—which are listening, response, and communications—he or she will prevail at Marriott.” The success or failure of any business is certainly based upon leadership.
I mention this story to better explain why I am successful with the companies I turn around. For I only accept companies where the CEO has completely bought into the training that he or she is the key to success in forming a positive culture. The head determines how the body functions.
Saying this, allow me to reveal four factors that normally surface in negative cultures:
- Poor communication.
- Little accountability.
- No long-term vision.
- Lack of personal values.
Each of these factors require a minimum of an hour-long teaching session. However, these, along with other stumbling blocks, create a non-dynamic culture and if a culture is not dynamic the company is either surviving or worse, dying.
But, here’s the good news! Remember the negative statements that began this article? They are real examples of a company I helped turn around. This company is now vibrant and alive and has become a major threat in it’s industry. When your culture is positively ignited, your people become vibrant, and your vision becomes reality!