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Managing Culture Change in the Workplace 

Achieving Real Cultural Shifts in Your Workplace

Your company is like a sports team. You need the best infrastructure, training, personnel, and resources if you are to succeed. But you also need something else. You need culture and identity. You need engagement right across the board.

This is where Performance by Design can help. We assist you as you develop a Culture Change Programme, achieving genuine cultural shifts within your workplace. Want to know more? Read on to find out, or reach out to our team today to discuss your needs.


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The Importance of Company Culture

Your company culture is an organic, evolving entity that can be difficult to pin down. At its heart, it is the atmosphere that exists within your business, it is the people who work within your teams, and it is the identity and DNA of your company.

Why is this so important? Because changing the culture of your business means changing what it feels like to work for your company. This has a significant impact on the effectiveness of your teams and your readiness to overcome challenges and obstacles.

A great company culture ensures that team members feel like they are part of something worthwhile, something bigger than themselves. It incubates trust between teams and between personnel, as well as fosters an atmosphere of fairness, transparency, and open communication.


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What Is Cultural Change in an Organisation?

Cultural change simply means taking that organisational culture and changing it for something better. Why would you do this? Well, it all comes down to how your business is performing.

We can think of a business like a sports team. You might have excellent training facilities for your team, and you might have the strongest and most skilful players, but you are going to struggle if the atmosphere and culture are all wrong. If players don’t care about the team as a whole, don’t communicate with their teammates, and disengage altogether, they can’t perform at their best.

It’s the same within your business. You may have the best infrastructure, the most skilled personnel, and the most extensive resources, but it all comes to nothing without the right culture. So, if your culture is not working, you change it — this is what we mean by workplace cultural change or culture shifting.

What Motivates Culture Shift in an Organisation?

Up to now, we’ve talked about things that don’t feel quite right — amorphous, intangible ideas of atmosphere and environment. But there are tangible factors that motivate culture shift. We can divide these into push and pull factors.

Push Factors

  • Disharmony within the workforce
  • Missed targets and failures
  • A lack of a cohesive plan or strategy

Pull Factors

  • The desire for a more unified set of teams
  • The idea of improving corporate performance and transforming operations
  • The formation of a robust yet flexible and dynamic strategy for the future

How Do You Change Bad Company Culture?

Here at Performance by Design, we are invested in transforming organisational culture — manifesting cultural shifts that transform the way companies operate. But how is this done?

We have identified four practices that help with this process of change — the four levers for evolving and changing corporate culture. Take a look at what these are:

Outline the Aspiration

Cultural change begins with an aspiration — a model you want to achieve for your business. To identify and outline this, you’ll first need to define exactly where you’re currently at and then discuss with leaders and stakeholders within your organisation where you want to go from here. Be clear and precisely define which changes you want to make within your organisation.

Build a Leadership Team

Cultural change depends on great leadership — both at the top level and elsewhere through the tiers of your organisation. You need to find leaders who align perfectly with your cultural aspirations. These will be people who can instil the values you need from your teams. You may source leaders from within your organisation or from outside.

Bring Everyone On Board with Cultural Change

Real business cultural change needs complete engagement from all personnel. Everyone needs to be on board with the Culture Change Programme. Facilitate this with your senior leaders and initiate conversations about the importance of the cultural shift. Make sure everyone is on the same page.

Design the Route towards Cultural Change

Your organisation needs the right structures, systems, and processes in place, providing the road map to cultural change. This may involve introducing new technology and tools to your business, providing training, and other aspects of structural change.

Challenges to Maintaining Cultural Change in the Workplace

Challenges are not uncommon as you bring about cultural change in the workplace. These obstacles and points of friction can take many forms, including:

  • Personnel are not fully on board with cultural change.
  • The need for business culture change is not properly communicated.
  • The tools and structures implemented do not work in the right way.
  • Training is insufficient to prepare personnel for change.
  • Upper management are not fully on board with the change programme.
  • The timeline for change has not been properly planned.

Solutions for Managing Cultural Change in the Workplace

But challenges are just that — challenges. They can be overcome with the right solutions:

  • Give everyone the opportunity to have their voice heard, optimising engagement.
  • Focus on communication and transparency, communicating the need for change effectively. 
  • Test and analyse new tools and structures thoroughly before deployment.
  • Invest in training — make sure everyone has the skills required to deal with the changing culture.
  • Make sure upper management are on board and that there is a cultural change champion at the executive level.
  • Plan and develop the timeline carefully based on reliable data.

Motivating Employees to Accept the New Company Culture

With cultural shifts now in progress, how do you motivate your personnel? How do you make sure your employees accept the cultural change? Here’s how:

  • Communicate this new company culture clearly from the first interview when bringing in new personnel.
  • Welcome new personnel warmly — foster those important early connections.
  • Plan and define initial training and onboard tasks.
  • Recognise great performance and introduce accountability.
  • Prioritise effective communication.
  • Make everything easy for your employees, simplifying operations where possible.
  • Adopt a people-focused approach to management, inspiring and nurturing people within the business.

Tips for Creating Sustainable Change

Now you know a bit more about achieving meaningful cultural change for your business — what’s next? It’s time to implement this for real. Let’s take a look at a few final tips for how to make this happen, achieving real, sustainable change that lasts:

  • Provide feedback and positive reinforcement — make sure good work is recognised.
  • Don’t stop communicating, and make sure everyone feels they can have their say.
  • Prioritise ongoing development for managers and leaders — keep on inspiring.
  • Build the new culture into the policies and procedures of the business — implement a strong cultural framework.
  • Demonstrate leadership commitment — lead from the front in terms of the adoption of the new culture.

Speak to Performance by Design About Your Cultural Framework

Ready to get started? Ready to motivate your team and achieve real organisational change? Reach out to the Performance by Design team today. Get in touch by phone — or use our online form, and we’ll get back to you.