The ROI of investing in Workplace Culture
Workplace culture is hard to define, but we all know a good one when we experience it. The qualities of a positive and energetic work environment are typically seen in staff retention rates and overall productivity.
Overall culture can be learned from interaction. However, investing in the development of communication and interpersonal relationship skills of your team could very likely positively affect your bottom line. Research has shown that in addition to the expected benefits of improved productivity and workplace culture, investing in professional development trainings for your team can benefit in peripheral ways as well.
This was an interesting quote from a recent article in Fast Company, "People function most effectively when money isn't even involved." In fact, most employees who are offered professional development opportunities through their employer rank this among on of the top benefits offered. People want to feel valued, and investing in someone as an individual and a human being can go a long way to building loyalty and gaining their permission to lead.
One of the tangential benefits that employers realize when they begin investing in professional development workshops for their team is discovering abeyant and untapped talent among their team. Oftentimes, hidden skills, experience, or even an unexpressed desire for more responsibilities surfaces as a result of professional development trainings and the resulting feedback. That position needing to be filled may be able to be managed by people already on your team that you never even considered! Wow!
Another peripheral benefit is that interpersonal and communication workshops often result in a better understanding of the "people" and "personalities" to be navigated along the chain of command. When there is an understanding of the role and communication style of others, whether in management at the top of the chain, or further along, team members are more likely to "buy-in" to a management and communication style if they UNDERSTAND the person behind the position.
The importance of team members simply "naturally" or "organically" fitting in is overvalued. Actually, strong teams NEED diversity, and this often comes with very extreme personality differences. Trainings such as True Colors and other professional development workshops can help turn would-be discord into a culture of understanding and collaboration.