Workplace Culture Part 2 – Getting it Right

Posted by Luke Mitchell on 18 August 2015

Following on from our last blog regarding negative workplace behaviour and the significant damage it can cause to workplace morale, job satisfaction, productivity and profitability, this blog focuses on what can be done not only to minimise legal claims by employees but also to avoid some of the more insidious types of behaviour that affect the culture of a workplace.

For the most part, the culture of an organisation can be said to start at the top and filter downwards. John H C Colvin, CEO and Managing Director of Australian Institute of Company Directors, writing in the Company Director Magazine says “We know that ethical behaviour must be imbedded in an organisation’s culture. Setting standards as to how you expect internal stakeholders to operate is just as important as demonstrating these values yourself. Obviously, it is impossible to ask employees to act in a certain way if you do not”. Workplace mediation and training company, Mindful Mediation, lists the benefits of fostering a positive employment culture as follows:

  1. Workers can get on with their jobs, improving productivity, rather than focus on what is going wrong with the organisation, and the leadership team;
  2. Workers are proud to work for positive organisations and share their experience with their social networks, enhancing your company brand;
  3. Knowledge and experience is shared between workers which improves efficiency, productivity, and performance;
  4. People enjoy coming to work and are more committed to your organisation, reducing the huge costs of turnover; and
  5. Workers go home happier and more satisfied, and this impacts their families and friends and spreads to others, and you have a positive impact on society.

The work environment should not be a place to feel unsafe or unwelcome and for most part, it falls to the employer to ensure the undertaking of a role does not put the employee at risk of either physical or mental injury. But further to that basic expectation, it comes down to each and every workplace participant to have a positive contribution to the workplace culture. New York Times best-selling author Blaine Lee says “When people honour each other, there is a trust established that leads to synergy, interdependence, and deep respect. Both parties make decisions and choices based on what is right, what is best, what is valued most highly”.