The company culture you adopt, can determine the success/failure of your business and employees. While a healthy work culture educates and unifies people, it is tough to instil one when there are many employees. The larger the organisation, the more difficult it becomes. There are going to be many opinions, much more resistance and what not! While some might feel that there was no real need for any modification, others might feel the new culture does not match with their values.
Changing a rooted culture is one of the biggest hurdels a manager can face. The hurdles can be cognitive, due to limited resources, lack of motivation or institutional politics. But, however challenging it might look, it is not impossible to bring about the change. You can overcome the challenges of introducing a new work culture and make all your employees adhere to it if you keep these simple guidelines in mind:
Trying too hard to get every employee to accept the change in the work culture will only lead to disappointment. Start with those employees who have an influence on other employees in the company. They can be the culture champions, who are enthusiastic about adopting and influencing the culture. Once they are committed to the new change, highlight their achievements and accomplishments so that other employees get the message.
You and the influencer employees need to make every other team member feel like they are an integral part of the process. Keep them in the loop about the developments, take suggestions and opinions from them and if asked for – try to provide reasoning as to why the change is happening. This makes them feel rather important and motivates them to adopt the new work culture gracefully.
When you want to introduce a new work culture, ensure that it does not take away the little things that matter to employees. These can include rewards, social events and other activities related to professional and personal development. Work around the existing culture and make a new one. Do not eradicate the old values in a split-second and expect employees to follow it.
Overusing authority is demotivating and can make employees feel that they are being coerced to accept the new culture. Do not impose the cultural change. Instead, use leadership tools to make them a part of the change.
Remember that your employees come from diverse backgrounds. Embrace their uniqueness regardless of their gender, religion, race or sexual orientation. When you respect and value differences and the various perspectives your employees bring to the company, you will find that they appreciate the changes that you plan to bring about in the organisation.
Have you had to instil a new work culture in your organisation? How did you go about it? Feel free to mention this in the comment section below!