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Where does your company culture come from?

Published on March 20th, 2017 by Scott Summers

Culture type: Aggressive

Culture Description: Blame

In a nutshell: Your culture describes an organisation in which confrontation prevails and finger-pointing is rewarded.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Point out the mistakes of others.
  • Criticise ideas and highlight even minor flaws.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees are being reinforced to oppose ideas and make safe decisions.

Over time employees become demotivated to make extra effort, creativity and innovation are squashed, which leads to poor problem solving and “watered down’ solutions.

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Culture Description: Power

In a nutshell: Your culture describes a non-participative organisation structured on the basis of the authority inherent in the hierarchy.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Insist or demand when telling others what to do.
  • Heavily control others to drive tasks to completion.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees believe that they will be rewarded for controlling their staff.

Over time employees become resistant, hold back information and contribute at the minimum acceptable level.

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Culture Description: Competitiveness

In a nutshell: Your culture is one in which winning is over-valued and members are rewarded for out-performing one another.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Behave competitively to outperform their peers.
  • Do anything necessary to look good.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees start to operate with a win-lose attitude. They work against their peers rather than with them. Cooperation is reduced.

Over time employees become overly competitive which can lead to your organisation working in silos.

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Culture Description: Perfectionism

In a nutshell: Your culture characterises an organisation in which perfectionism, persistence, and time & effort are valued.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Set unrealistic or overly challenging targets.
  • Stay on top of every detail even if that means working late.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees put too much emphasis on avoiding mistakes and keeping track of everything – no matter how long it takes.

Over time employees lose sight of goals, get lost in details, set standards that are unrealistic and create tasks that are unnecessarily difficult – all of which can lead employees to develop symptoms of stress.

 

Culture type: Passive

Culture Description: Approval

In a nutshell: Yours is a culture where conflicts are avoided and interpersonal relationships are pleasant—at least superficially.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Prefer employees to gain approval before completing a task.
  • Prefer employees to go along with what you say.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees feel they must agree with, gain the approval of, and be liked by others.

Over time employees come to consensus on decisions but lack any personal commitment to what was decided.

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Culture Description: Conventional

In a nutshell: Your culture is of an organisation that is conservative, traditional, and bureaucratically controlled.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Prefer employees to conform or fit into a mould.
  • Prefer employees to follow rules, policies and standard operating procedures.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees follow rather than lead and suppress innovation and adaptation.

Over time employees are prevented from identifying new and better ways of doing things, taking risks, and assuming responsibility for their actions.

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Culture Description: Dependent

In a nutshell: Your organisation often fails to reward success but nevertheless punishes mistakes.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Prefer employees to do what they are told and clear all decisions with superiors.
  • Prefer employees to please those in positions of authority.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees lack individual initiative, spontaneity, flexibility, and timely decision making.

Over time employees are micro-managed and become reactive to the expectations of managers & leaders.

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Culture Description: Avoidance

In a nutshell: Your organisation often fails to reward success but nevertheless punishes mistakes.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Avoid being blamed for mistakes and shift responsibility to others.
  • Keep a low profile

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees shift responsibility to others and to avoid any possibility of being blamed for a mistake.

Over time employees are unlikely to make decisions, move in new directions, learn from mistakes, or adapt to changes in competitive environments.

 

Culture type: Constructive

Culture Description: Achievement

In a nutshell: Yours is a culture where your organisation values employees who set and accomplish their own goals.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Prefer employees to set S.M.A.R.T. goals.
  • Prefer employees to focus on improving their performance.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees enjoy solving problems and serving clients and customers well.

Over time employees set challenging, yet attainable goals that are based on improving their individual performance.

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Culture Description: Self-Development

In a nutshell: Your culture values creativity, quality over quantity, and both task accomplishment and individual employee growth.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Prefer employees to gain enjoyment from their work.
  • Prefer employees to develop themselves by taking on new and interesting activities.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees become innovative and offer higher-quality products and services.

Over time employees emphasise personal growth and development, encourage lateral and out-of-the-box thinking.

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Culture Description: Encouragement

In a nutshell: Your culture characterises an organisation that is managed in a participative and person centred way.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Prefer employees to be supportive, helpful and open to influencing each other.
  • Prefer employees to show commitment by getting actively involved with activities.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees become more effective at working together to solve problems.

Over time employees break down silos and start tapping into their own and each others potential.

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Culture Description: Affiliative

In a nutshell: Your culture promotes team harmony, and helps to solve conflict. Employees feel connected to each other and are adept at building teams.

Your leaders have a tendency to:

  • Prefer employees to build and maintain healthy working relationships.
  • Prefer employees to be friendly, open and empathetic to others needs.

Therefore, the impact is likely to be: Managers and employees become more loyal to the company because they feel they ‘fit’.

Over time employees use emotional intelligence to communicate openly, honestly and consistently.

“I just wanted to say a huge thank you for yesterday.
I have no doubt that “Fearless Females” did have a massive impact on our students.

Your collective energy, commitment, warmth, and empathy created a truly special event.

Thank you so much and I can’t wait to work with you again in the future”

Caroline BarfootHead of Employability & Student EnterpriseSouthampton Solent University