Dr Amina Aitsi-Selmi, a credible transformational coach and consultant, said that people don’t necessarily leave bosses, but employees do leave toxic work culture.
In her short research, Dr Amina cited that toxic work culture is driven by common work-related psychological factors such as job strain, effort-reward imbalance, and rigid hierarchy. These factors are well-known to be linked to death, heart disease, diabetes, mental illness, and other health harms. To put it simply, toxic work culture is unhealthy company environment caused by manipulative threats or lack of investment in employees’ wellbeing.
Research by Google found that toxic work culture does not come from resource, money, or talents. Instead, it comes from a lack of psychological safety in the workplace. Psychological safety is when team members feel safe to take risks and be vulnerable in front of each other.
For example, you are working in an environment where competitiveness dominates – where people play a zero-sum game or claim superior knowledge through criticism which increases a constant sense of threat and manipulative politics. This kind of work culture will reduce team participation as it messes with their self-protection. Consequently, it will affect the overall wellbeing of your employees and overall bottom line of your company.
Fortunately, psychological safety can be well-created by the existence of workplace community. Workplace community can strengthen relationships within a team, thus, creating a strong positive culture. According to Total Wellness article, workplace relationship is important to create a positive company culture. There is no possible way for a strong culture to grow if employees do not know each other or barely interact with one another.
Another survey from APCO and MMB found that 96 percent of small business owners got a positive and better return of investment from conducting company event that fosters workplace community. In fact, just like investing in marketing and recruiting, investing in company events can also result in numerous positive payoff.
To achieve a good result, leaders need to facilitate media for building successful workplace community. Well-built company culture should support involvement and provide positive, fun ways for their employees to get together for both personal and professional activities.
“Encourage a positive work environment where people share helpful stories about work and motivate each other to reach a common goal.” – Shawn Lim
For instance, leaders can consider weekly team meals, happy hour excursions, or a book club to get things started. Doing volunteer or social activities together can also nourish your team community.
When creating the events, you should create a thorough and careful plan to generate a maximum result and not wasting your investment. And your planning should involve these two essential elements.