Driving the culture of your team

Karen Gately

Karen Gately is the author of 'The People Manager’s Toolkit: A Practical guide to getting the best from people'. A highly regarded leadership and people-management specialist, Karen is the founder of Ryan Gately, an HR consulting and Leadership development practice. For more information, visit www.karengately.com.au or contact info@karengately.com.au

Often described as the personality of a business, culture is simply the way things are typically done. Created from the collective behaviours of people in a given setting or group, culture is not about the way things should be in theory but about the way they are in practice. The decisions made, the priorities set, the actions taken — all provide insight into the culture of a team or business.

Here are seven key priorities underpin your ability to drive the culture you want in your team:

1. Leadership

Leading by example is a non- negotiable first step. It is every leader’s responsibility to show case the behaviours you want and expect from others. No-one should be appointed to a leadership role unless they operate in ways consistent with the culture you want to create.

2. Define Cultural Aspirations

Like anything you want to achieve, a clear vision of where you want to go is crucial to enabling you determine the best path to take you there. It isn’t enough (for example) to simply say you want a high performance culture – you need to clearly articulate what high performance means in your team.

3. Define Enabling Behaviours

Identify desirable behaviours that reflect the culture you are aspiring to create. Every member of your team needs to understand how to behave in a way that is considered not only acceptable but successful.

4. Set Clear Expectations

Once you establish a clear view of how you want people to behave, you need to tell them. Setting clear expectations enables you to hold people accountable to appropriate behaviour. While there is some value in whole of team communications, you need to engage one-to-one with each member of your team to ensure they understand what is expected of them.

5. Make It Matter

One of the biggest mistakes I observe leaders to make is failing to assess behaviour or apply consequences. Unless the way people behave truly matters, it’s unlikely you will create the culture you want. Consequences mean rewarding and recognizing desirable behaviours and taking correction when needed.

6. Recruit for Fit

Hire people aligned with your values and behaviours. Look for evidence of the approach they are likely to take. While outcomes matter the way people going about their role and working with the rest of your team is critical.

7. Be Consistent

Send consistent messages about what is expected, accepted and ultimately successful when it comes to behaviour. From one person to the next and over time you need to consistently reinforce behavioural expectations.

Tags: leadership strategy

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

State of the CMO 2020

CMO’s State of the CMO is an annual industry research initiative aimed at understanding how ...

More whitepapers

Latest Videos

More Videos

I found decent information in your article. I am impressed with how nicely you described this subject, It is a gainful article for us. Th...

Daniel Hughes

What 1800 Flowers is doing to create a consistent customer communications experience

Read more

Extremely informative. One should definitely go through the blog in order to know different aspects of the Retail Business and retail Tec...

Sheetal Kamble

SAP retail chief: Why more retailers need to harness data differently

Read more

It's actually a nice and helpful piece of info. I am satisfied that you shared this helpful information with us. Please stay us informed ...

FIO Homes

How a brand facelift and content strategy turned real estate software, Rockend, around

Read more

I find this very strange. The Coles store i shop in still has Flouro lights? T though this would have been the 1st thing they would have ...

Brad

Coles launches new sustainability initiative

Read more

Well, the conversion can be increased by just using marketing, but in general if you are considering an example with Magento, then it is ...

Bob

How Remedy is using digital marketing and commerce to drive conversion

Read more

Blog Posts

Why conflict can be good for your brand

Conflict is essentially a clash. When between two people, it’s just about always a clash of views or opinions. And when it comes to this type of conflict, more than the misaligned views themselves, what we typically hate the most is our physiological response.

Kathy Benson

Chief client officer, Ipsos

Brand storytelling lessons from Singapore’s iconic Fullerton hotel

In early 2020, I had the pleasure of staying at the newly opened Fullerton Hotel in Sydney. It was on this trip I first became aware of the Fullerton’s commitment to brand storytelling.

Gabrielle Dolan

Business storytelling leader

You’re doing it wrong: Emotion doesn’t mean emotional

If you’ve been around advertising long enough, you’ve probably seen (or written) a slide which says: “They won’t remember what you say, they’ll remember how you made them feel.” But it’s wrong. Our understanding of how emotion is used in advertising has been ill informed and poorly applied.

Zac Martin

Senior planner, Ogilvy Melbourne

Sign in