Have you ever tried to improve yourself in some way, while you’re surrounded by people that don’t support your efforts? It’s like swimming against the current. This is exactly what happens in companies when certain individuals are committed to their growth, but the culture around them is not. However, when companies establish cultures of growth, where everyone is encouraged and excited to develop their gifts, strengths and talents, then everyone thrives. And so does the company.
Companies with cultures that value employee development
get many business benefits, right down to the bottom line. As the many studies on the subject now show, the better the company culture, the higher the performance in profitability, productivity, customer satisfaction, and employee engagement.
Here are a few general guidelines for creating a positive culture of growth.
Establish Psychological Safety
Foster social connections. Encourage individuals to ask for help from one another and share their stories and vulnerabilities with one another. Doing so will develop psychological safety, which, as Google learned, “more than anything, [is] critical to making a team work.” The bonds between individuals facilitate openness and creativity by blending life and work to make both more meaningful.
While it is helpful for coworkers to have rapport amongst themselves, as a leader, you also need to make it safe for those individuals to be fully themselves around you. As Emotional Intelligence guru Daniel Goleman makes clear, doing so will encourage exploration, risk taking, and innovation that can ultimately help satisfy work and life goals.
Invest In This Supportive Culture
Create opportunities for people to share in small groups. Take the time to catch up with what’s going on in people’s lives. And be sure to reward and encourage people for the growth that they do make, work-related or not. When people’s gifts and strengths are recognized, they feel more motivated in what they do.
For example, the CEO of one of our client companies made her team’s bonuses for that year dependent not just on their financial performances, but also on how far they had moved toward clearly articulated growth goals. Within six months, individuals flourished and the team performance increased dramatically.
Our goal as the Numina team is to help clients sustain cultures conducive to personal and professional growth. Our team development work not only helps participants be aware, connected, confident, and powerful, but also gives them the access to immersive content to help them keep growing and trains them to support their peers after the facilitator leaves.
If you would like to take some initial steps to creating a culture of growth, try starting your next team meeting asking everybody to share one aspect of their leadership that they feel is underdeveloped. Then ask them what support they could receive to develop it.
Let us know how it goes.