360° Coverage : Culture Versus Morale: How To Avoid A Common Trap

2 Updates
Culture Versus Morale: How To Avoid A Common Trap

Culture Versus Morale: How To Avoid A Common Trap

Feb 6 2014, 1:41pm CST | by

In far too many outlets and at water-cooler discussions, people discuss “culture” in the workplace, especially at startup workplaces, incorrectly. Most people, in referencing culture, think of a “...

Filed under: news

 
 
 

29 weeks ago

Culture Versus Morale: How To Avoid A Common Trap

Feb 6 2014, 1:41pm CST | by

In far too many outlets and at water-cooler discussions, people discuss “culture” in the workplace, especially at startup workplaces, incorrectly. Most people, in referencing culture, think of a “rah rah” grouping of employees, hugs, laid-back vibe and dress code, maybe free perks – our office has popcorn and slushies – or even a weekly happy hour outing. All of this stuff is great, but it’s not culture. These elements can be fun and enjoyable – I don’t want to be a Scrooge here – but they’re not accurate when culture is the main point up for debate. These factors contribute to a strong morale. The distinction between culture and morale can sometimes be blurry, so let’s talk about what culture is – and how a strong sense of it within your team can impact your performance, and thus, boost morale.

Culture should be viewed as the Operating System for your company, because it’s characterized by the things you do and repeat on a regular basis. Your decision-making process that you employ regularly reflects the priorities that you emphasize, along with the philosophy and values you deem important and want employees to uphold. As a result, the things that you measure (or neglect to measure) on a regular basis fit into this overall framework as well.

For example, the world knows (and loves) Zappos for its superior customer service. That’s a priority to them as a team and the leadership staff prides itself on their ability to sustain such a high standard of excellence; they’ve achieved this by valuing and prioritizing the value of self-expression. This key principle for them is the component of the Operating System that is the “Zappos Culture,” which in turn is exemplified by the antics reported the world over: an annual yearbook, to which every employee contributes, or the desk-decorating frenzy throughout the floors of their office. Each person is encouraged to express himself, which translates to self-confidence and self-empowerment to help clients get their issues resolved, right away without question, in their own style. To be clear, the crazy desks and the awesome yearbook are wonderful, but they’re not culture – they’re simply the vehicle to reinforce the element of culture that does matter to Zappos: self-expression. What values would you want to emphasize at your company? Figure that out first, and then think of the fun, quirky way to drive that message home – not the other way around.

A great way to reinforce cultural values is through the implementation of regular habits or rituals. A great example of this has been utilized by The Ritz Carlton. Every shift, at every property in the company, the entire staff of each hotel gathers for their “Daily Lineup.” This tradition was borrowed by the Ritz, from the early days of luxury French restaurants, when the executive chef would gather the staff to go over the day’s menu to make sure everyone was on the same page and could provide the same messaging. The staff at the Ritz uses the same theory to make sure that all staff members are clued into anything out of the ordinary taking place, and to share “wow” moments with one another. When someone has noticed a fellow employee do something above and beyond the call of duty for a guest, they can tell the group of the peer’s efforts. Two notes are important here: the first is that the group gathers daily, so the regimentation of this allows for an expectation from staff and serves as reinforcement that this meeting is critically important. The second is that a standard of excellence for staff to their guests is rewarded – this cultural value is a priority and is given credence because it’s an agenda item at this critically important, regularly held meeting.

Every company’s priorities and values are different – they need to be uniquely yours and help carve out your niche in the world. However, the most obvious way to keep morale at your company high is by setting a cultural expectation of winning, through a standard of accountability. When the company’s team can believe in the mission and each person feels like she’s contributing to the overall goal, then your cultural values will be easily upheld, and morale will be higher than ever. This doesn’t necessarily mean everything will be rosy every day, but putting wins up on your scoreboard and maintaining a pattern of high performance keeps everyone with their eyes on the prize as part of something bigger than themselves. When that’s the case, your culture will be a strong foundation – a true Operating System – upon which you can grow.

For an inside view into my world as a VC, entrepreneur, author, and keynote speaker, visit JoshLinkner.com.

Source: Forbes Business

 
Update
2

3 days ago

Khazanah throws MAS RM6b lifeline

Aug 29 2014 5:01pm CDT | Source: Business Times Singapore

August 30, 2014 1:15 AMKHAZANAH Nasional will inject RM6 billion (SS$2.4 billion) over three years to resuscitate loss-making Malaysia Airlines (MAS) under a recovery plan that includes even an Act of Parliament. Other key moves are migrating its operations, assets and liabilities to a new company (NewCo) and s ...
Source: Business Times Singapore   Full article at: Business Times Singapore
 

 
Update
1

4 days ago

MAS posts loss of RM307m for Q2

Aug 28 2014 5:00pm CDT | Source: Business Times Singapore

August 29, 2014 1:13 AMMALAYSIA Airlines (MAS) registered a loss of RM307 million (S$122 million) for the second quarter to end-June, but warned of worse to come in the second half when the "full financial impact of the double tragedies of MH370 and MH17 ...
Source: Business Times Singapore   Full article at: Business Times Singapore
 

 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

US doctor tests positive for Ebola in Liberia
Washington, Sep 3 (IANS) An American missionary doctor working in Liberia has tested positive for the Ebola virus, his organisation SIM USA announced Tuesday.
 
 
IS video shows beheading of second US journalist
Washington, Sep 2 (IANS) Days after the beheading of American photojournalist James Foley, Sunni militant group Islamic State (IS) has posted a video showing the beheading of another kidnapped American journalist Steven Sotloff, CNN reported.
 
 
IS beheads second US journalist
Washington, Sep 2 (IANS) The Islamic State militant organisation has posted a video titled "A second message to America", showing the beheading of American journalist Steven Sotloff, CNN reported.
 
 
India offers red carpet, not red tape, Modi hard sells India (Roundup)
Tokyo, Sep 2 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi Tuesday hard sold India to Japanese investors saying that his country offers only a red carpet and not red tape while dubbing his five-day trip to Japan that ends Wednesday as "very successful".
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

US doctor tests positive for Ebola in Liberia
Washington, Sep 3 (IANS) An American missionary doctor working in Liberia has tested positive for the Ebola virus, his organisation SIM USA announced Tuesday. The doctor was treating obstetrics patients at ELWA...
Read more on Business Balla
 
Anastacia slams Kim, Kanye
Los Angeles, Sep 3 (IANS) Singer Anastacia slams reality TV star Kim Kardashian and her husband Kanye West saying their need for attention is just so ill placed. The 45-year-old hit out at the star couple for having...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
EU to decide on new sanctions on Russia
Brussels, Sep 3 (IANS) The incoming European Union (EU) foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini Tuesday said the EU leaders will decide on new sanctions on Russia by Friday. "The package (of further sanctions) will be...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Israel 'stands by' new land appropriation in West Bank
Jerusalem, Sep 3 (IANS) Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman Tuesday said his country "stands by its decision" to appropriate 1,000 acre land in the West Bank. "Gush Etzion settlement bloc reflects a wide...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Jolie's wedding dress featured her kids' drawings
Los Angeles, Sep 3 (IANS) Actress Angelina Jolie walked down the aisle in a wedding gown with various coloured illustrations drawn by her children. She married actor Brad Pitt Aug 23 in France and on her wedding day,...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
UN chief welcomes lifting of Iraqi town siege
United Nations, Sep 3 (IANS) UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Tuesday welcomed the end of militant siege on the northern Iraqi town of Amerli, saying it averted "a major humanitarian disaster". Ban welcomed the...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Second beheading plunges Obama into top crisis
Washington, Sep 3 (IANS) Just two weeks after beheading American photojournalist James Foley, the Islamic State (IS) Sunni extremist organisation sent what it called "A second message to America", with a video showing...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
11 killed in Pakistan building collapse
Islamabad, Sep 2 (IANS) At least 11 people, including women and children, were killed Tuesday when a roof of an old building collapsed in Pakistan, a media report said. As many as 18 people were wounded when a two-...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Imran refuses to budge as parliament supports Pakistan PM (Roundup)
Islamabad, Sep 2 (IANS) Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan refused to budge on his demand for Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's resignation Tuesday as a joint session of parliament came out overwhelmingly...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
IS video shows beheading of second US journalist
Washington, Sep 2 (IANS) Days after the beheading of American photojournalist James Foley, Sunni militant group Islamic State (IS) has posted a video showing the beheading of another kidnapped American journalist...
Read more on Ad Balla