Artículo Forbes

Jose Luis Castro Forbes Councils Member
Forbes Nonprofit Council| Membership (Fee-Based)

Six Ways To Build A High-Performing Organizational Culture

diciembre 30, 2022
President and CEO of Vital Strategies, a global public health organization that designs solutions to pressing health problems.


Organizational culture is really just shorthand for how employees interact with one another and solve problems. Whether you manage a small team or are on the executive leadership team, inspiring employees to be fully engaged can be challenging, but the alternative is lagging productivity and morale. For a more optimal work environment for your team members, I’ve outlined six recommendations for building a high-performing organizational culture.

1. Recognize employees’ efforts and accomplishments.

We’re all motivated by different factors, so it’s important to recognize employees in multiple ways. Go around at meetings and shout out everyone’s recent contributions, and allow team members to acknowledge one another. Set a tone of gratitude and encouragement, and make the link between individual performance and team success explicit. Positive feedback loops are as easy to initiate virtually as they are in person, and they help keep everyone on mission and task.

2. Give employees a voice.

An organization is only as solid as its platforms for openly sharing thoughts, ideas and concerns. Implement occasional forums and surveys that include newer and more veteran employees in equal measure. Host all-staff town halls that spark department-by-department improvements. And if you as a leader maintain an open-door policy, make sure your employees know it’s not merely symbolic. Create an atmosphere that’s conducive to forthright, two-way communication that can, in many cases, inspire bold new directions while mitigating worker dissatisfaction.

3. Model your mission.

As a leader, you have the power to set the tone for your entire organization. If you’re consistent with your efforts to promote and support your organization’s culture, other leaders will follow suit. And if you uphold those values inside and outside of the workplace, you’ll be looked up to as someone with more at stake than the proverbial bottom line. If you notice that your team members are falling short of your organization’s cultural ideals, consider it an opportunity to reinforce those principles, rather than admonishing or playing the role of culture police.

4. Forge connections between team members.

Break down departmental silos by having teams share staff-wide updates on their progress and discover ways they can be collaborating for mutual benefit. Encourage employees to take lunch breaks together. Introduce colleagues who you think might connect in the hopes they find common ground over organizational tasks or meeting up outside of work. Remote teams with members located near one another can replicate this in kind. You can’t force rapport, but you don’t have to sit by idly while your staff idles either.

5. Focus on learning and development.

Your organization will always need to innovate, and you can’t leave any employee behind. In turn, any dedicated employee will urge leadership to offer periodic training to sharpen skills that help them keep pace with evolving industries. Consider implementing an organization-wide training program for new hires as well as longtime workers. You can partner with online training companies or create custom in-house modules with input from your staff. Whatever your approach, make sure that your training initiatives benefit your entire organization and don’t just focus on one department.

6. Hire with culture top of mind.

As your organization grows, it’s important to not lose sight of its original mission and vision. To help keep your culture intact, make sure you’re hiring people who align with your stated values and will pay them forward. When recruiting candidates for roles big or small, also look beyond the requisite skills and experience and get a sense of that person’s character and purpose. And if you make a hiring mistake, don’t be afraid to correct yourself. All of this will help you scale while centering your fundamental reason for being.

In order to thrive as an organization, leadership and management need to understand what a healthy culture looks like and be willing to make changes. Be accessible and magnanimous, but also steadfast about big-picture goals and the kind of commitment and camaraderie that’s required. This is especially prudent in the era of hybrid and remote work, but it has never worked to do anything less.

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