How would you describe the working culture at your organisation? Does it enable people to contribute and thrive? Is it the same across the organisation from top to bottom and across different teams? Do the board and senior management team value the same behaviours and promote a consistent, constructive culture? Do you have policies and systems that allow you to deal with problems if they occur?
A negative culture can have a huge impact on the productivity and stability of the organisation. And on everyone’s wellbeing. Conversely, a productive culture that values curiosity and constructive challenge at every level means that people will feel safe and secure enough to speak their minds, challenge norms, be innovative and, if necessary, challenge behaviours.
Knowing your culture
The culture of an organisation is hard to define and even harder to change. It’s easier to feel than see. It is the sum of many different behaviours and attitudes. It’s “the way we do things around here”. But it’s also “the way we think around here.” This can be positive, or badly oppressive. The example set at the top is critical, especially by the board and by senior staff (if you have them). If your charity has a lot of staff or volunteers it can be particularly hard to be in touch with how it feels to be involved in your organisation.
To read the full Association of Chairs article click here.
Source: Association of Chairs