5 Steps to Re-Create a Poor Office Culture

Written on the 10 July 2016 by Charles Allen

Have you ever been involved in an absolute KILLER, most-awesome, inspiring office culture? How about on the other end of the spectrum where the office culture is really negative, deflating, with a sense of 'Can't wait to get the heck outta here'? I have been involved in both.

A great office culture makes life more fun. A great office culture is exciting. A great office culture is uplifting. Whereas, on the other hand, a poor office culture is like cancer. There is not enough radiation around to burn it out.

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So, how do you take a poor office culture and turn it into a great office culture? In my opinion, there are 5 critical steps to get it turned around, discussed below.

Step 1. Establish the hierarchy. By this I mean you must establish who is in charge, who has the final word, who is the boss. This is normally simple enough. Even though your office may have different department heads, does everyone know with whom the buck stops? Every successful company must have a top dog, does yours? You don't necessarily have to like or agree with this person, but the office culture must have a top dog.

Step 2. Establish the Company mission. Does your company as a whole know where it wants to go collectively? As a whole, is your company's immediate and future plans known to all personnel? Make sure everyone is on board with what you are trying to achieve.

Step 3. Set Expectations. Have you ever been in a relationship and your partner had no idea of what your expectation of him/her was? And you had no idea of what their expectation of you is? That is devastating to any relationship. [AN UNEXPRESSED EXPECTATION IS A PREMEDITATED RESENTMENT]

The same rule of communication applies in business. Do your department heads know what you expect of them? Do they know what to expect from you as top dog? Communication is the key. Set the expectations for everyone involved.

Step 4. Be Accountable. To re-create the office culture from poor to great, everyone involved must be held accountable. To be held accountable means to review the expectations of all personnel. If the expectations are being met then reward that person. If they are not being met, then take action to correct it immediately.

If that person is not capable of meeting the expectations then make the appropriate change and move forward. And do you know where the accountability starts? At the top. With the top dog. Is the top dog doing what should be done? Just remember, if you are the top dog, everyone is watching you.

Step 5. Develop a Great work ethic with a never give up attitude. In reality, the office culture is nothing more than a reflection of the boss. It's a reflection of the top dog. Just like any sports team, that team is a reflection of it's coach. That team takes on the personality of it's coach.

The most successful teams have a 'top dog' type coach. The players know with whom the buck stops when it comes to performance. If your coach has a great work ethic, then the virus will spread throughout the organization. A great work ethic is like an anti-dote for cancer. It heals and overcomes a lot of shortcomings. With a great work ethic and never give up attitude, you will see the office culture rapidly change.

Re-creating an office culture can be very challenging. It can also be fun and very lucrative. Just make sure you are fpart of the solution and not part of the problem. Are you up to the challenge?

Chris Doe Ford - does your office suffer from a poor culture? Do you want to change that culture but not sure how? For more information please visit my website at

Charles AllenAuthor: Charles Allen
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