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Is Your Organization’s Culture Dangerous?

This article is not about your organization’s physical environment, the maintenance on its’ tools and equipment, or safe work behaviors. It’s about the hazards and risks of personal choice and voicing one’s candid, respectful opinion. Is your organization’s culture DANGEROUS? Do employees believe that “certain things” may cause personal, emotional harm or loss in your organization? Do you know what those “certain things” are?

Try this simple assessment that I use with my clients. Answer each question below on a 1-3 scale where 1 = Never; 2 = Sometimes; and 3 = Often.

Is it “dangerous” in your organization to:

  1. Ask tough questions without fear of being labeled as a non-team player?
  2. Admit you do not understand something (ex: strategy, change, and metrics)?
  3. Suggest that deadlines and/or goals are unrealistic given the resources available?
  4. Point out where exceptions seem to consistently take place?
  5. Identify and share where you believe organizational values are being short-cut?
  6. Ask for personal development time?
  7. Challenge the perceptions about your career potential?
  8. Disconnect completely for vacations and time off?
  9. Anticipate receiving any type of sincere appreciation and recognition?
  10. Provide candid, respectful feedback to your boss about ‘’how they manage you”?
  11. Expect work-life harmony?  Your organization needs always seem to be non-negotiable.
  12. Voice a different opinion than that of your Executive leadership team?

If you scored less than 16 then CONGRATULATIONS! If you scored 16-18, then CAUTION! If you scored more than 18, then WARNING!

When people sense or fear danger, most experience increased stress and take precautions. Those precautions in your business culture could include: limiting their participation and involvement; avoiding risk; resisting change; filtering information versus sharing reality; disconnecting relationships; and disengaging personal commitment, effort, and loyalty. Each of these precautions is waste of human creativity and capability.

High performance organizations must continually monitor and address any perceived “dangers” in their culture. So bottom line – is your organization culture safe or dangerous?

Republished with author’s permission from original post.

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