In an organization, big or small Work Culture matters. In a previous post, we discussed why it was vital, as a Small Business Owner to define your work culture, here we will look at factors that could adversely affect your work culture. It is important that you observe your Small Business to check if any of these factors are prevalent so that you can correct them before they influence employee morale or performance. Here are the instances and behaviors to keep an eye out for:
1. Divisions Between Management and Other Employees While hierarchy exists in all companies, if the structures are too rigid or employees feel they cannot express themselves because of the presence of mangers, then this is a bad sign for your work culture. Managers should play the role of leaders who guide the vision of your company and should not be seen as harsh taskmaster who only assigns tasks and do not contribute to the growth of the company themselves.
2. Lack of Feedback and Praise Feedback plays a critical role in improving employee job performance and facilitating an open exchange of ideas. Good Feedback or Praise lets employees that they are doing a good job, are part of the team and their contributions are appreciated. When employees do not benefit from these interactions, they are often de-motivated and find it difficult to perform.
3. Micromanagement While the previous two points discussed are indicative of not enough involvement on the part of managers or you, as the Small Business Owner, Micromanagement often occurs due to an over-involvement of the leadership. When a task or responsibility is assigned, it is essential that you give your employees the requisite training and space to make the task their own. It is important that you give them enough leeway to make their own decisions and feel in control of their parts of the project.
4. Gossip among Staff Gossip might seem harmless at first but unless rumors and accusations are addressed head on, they can spiral and become extremely detrimental to your work culture. Other than taking up a sizable amount of time and effort in your employees’ workday it also has a negative impact on team cohesion and collaboration.
If you find that gossip is becoming ingrained in the work culture of your small business, it is important that you immediately discover the source and take them aside to talk to them and let them know that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated. This will go a long way in affecting the tone and work culture of your business.
5. An Excess of Procedures & Processes The main attraction for employees to work at Small Businesses is often the lack of procedures and processes that come with running a large organization. If your Small Business is run on an informal rather than formal manner- this could work in favor of your business.
Putting too many rules and regulations in place will make your office a stuffy, undesirable place to work and often, these activities take away from the time employees would otherwise allocate to their work. Keep a watchful eye for these practices and should they arise, be sure to nip them in the bud before they destroy the work culture of your business.