10 Ways To Kill Team Culture

It’s the culture stupid! Culture matters whether you’re a small, medium, or large company. It matters because it helps attract and retain talent, motivates employees, improves customer experience, promotes collaboration and teamwork, and provides a competitive advantage when harnessed effectively.

A leader’s most important job is defining culture. Yes, that is your most important job because a culture will define itself if you don’t, and it will be hard to change in the future. A simple rule of thumb for knowing whether or not your culture works is to see how people, teams, and groups react when a problem happens. Do they come together to figure out ways to solve the problem? Is there positive energy? Do they point fingers? Do they avoid accountability?

At its most basic definition, culture is what you celebrate and tolerate.

This is important because a healthy, well-defined culture is the foundation for attracting, retaining, and empowering employees, driving performance, and fostering long-term success and resilience for the organization.

From the perspective of an employee, it matters how you show up. Specifically your attitude and behavior. With that said, here are 10 ways to deliberately kill culture:

  1. Show up late
  2. Blame others
  3. Half-assed effort
  4. Negative energy
  5. No accountability
  6. Bad or no communication
  7. Bad body language
  8. Entitlement
  9. Demeaning others
  10. Complainer

For you, the employee, read the list above and reflect on how you show up every day. Are you elevating or killing your team’s culture?

For you, the leader, the above behaviors are how you know your culture is lacking. You have to take immediate action when you notice any of the above behaviors in your team or organization. You will send a signal to your team that you tolerate any of the above, which is not what you want. Therefore, don’t be a culture killer!

Bottom line: Teams, groups, organizations, and businesses all have a culture. And, a leader’s most important job is defining culture. Ignore culture at your own peril.