How IT Leaders Can Improve their Team’s Culture for a Happy and Productive Work Environment

Work Environment

If organizations and leaders want a healthier, happier, and more productive team, promoting a work culture focused on support and collaboration is essential.

A crucial factor for organizational health and team performance is culture. Teams today are more productive and have higher levels of job satisfaction when they are actively involved and engaged in the conversation. A strong culture that fosters opportunities for change and growth requires intentional development and support.

Although it may seem like a big step, everyone is accountable for improving team culture. Here are a few strategies to foster a happier, healthier work environment in the IT industry.

Also Read: Four Key Leadership Skills for Today’s Digital-First Work Environment

Setting an agenda

Making conversations and meetings engaging for everyone may seem like a daunting task. Setting clear expectations with an agenda helps meetings be more productive and gives attendees a greater sense of security.

An excellent agenda includes background information, goals, a purpose, and preparation strategies. Agendas can minimize the cognitive strain for attendees who have to simultaneously read, comprehend, and respond instantly.

Identifying a goal and connections

Understanding the goal and intent of a discussion or activity enables participants to respond to two crucial questions: “Why are they attending?” and “What do they want to gain from their time together?”

To make a meeting or event more fruitful or successful, a thoughtfully selected icebreaker can be an essential part of the program. It sets the tone and can produce incredible outcomes in subsequent conversations and meetings.

Include everyone in the conversation

Creating an inclusive work environment helps encourage more diverse ideas and gives everyone the chance to be heard, whether the conversation is taking place in person, online, or asynchronous.

Leaders should step back and assess the situation and audience response to the discourse to accomplish this. Leaders should provide a clear agenda and ask questions to encourage involvement if some team members are not contributing. This can facilitate the development of a diverse thought environment and promote open communication and participation.

Also Read: How to Achieve Success in Agile-friendly Work Environment

Eliminate gender bias

Gender is ingrained in the way people talk and see things. Employees should be trained to pick words that more accurately convey their intentions and consciously modify what they say to be more inclusive.

By using inclusive language, one can enable others who might not ordinarily feel at ease to feel more psychologically safe. Additionally, it aids in dismantling implicit biases about jobs and interpersonal perceptions.

Recognizing the team 

It is essential to recognize and celebrate accomplishments together as a team. Leaders should highlight a team deliverable or even a report since there should be group credit for that achievement if it were a collaborative effort.

They might discover something useful for the team. The team should feel appreciated, whether it’s through a hack-a-thon day, a gift card, or happy hour. Asking questions and listening to the team members can help leaders understand what makes them feel valued.

Empower from the bottom up

When people have an emotional connection to the work they do, employee engagement rises. One way to promote this is by empowering employees to change how work is done.

The best people to advise and implement positive change are those who run the processes that interact directly with customers. If culture is the reason behind how things are done, encouraging employees to find ways to accomplish their best work undoubtedly impacts how they feel about it.

Putting a stop to the blame game

It is easy to identify the individual who was closest to the issue and list the mistakes they made when something goes wrong. This is not only a bad way to increase engagement but also unproductive. Not deficient people but defective processes are typically to blame for failures. Placing the blame on people only covers up the real problem.

Finding out why mistakes were made is the best way to handle them. Was the employee undertrained? Were the appropriate process inputs available? Is the workplace suitable for the task? Is it possible to make the process error-proof? Leaders can address the issue and boost engagement by working with employees to dig deeper.

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Prangya Pandab is an Associate Editor with OnDot Media. She is a seasoned journalist with almost seven years of experience in the business news sector. Before joining ODM, she was a journalist with CNBC-TV18 for four years. She also had a brief stint with an infrastructure finance company working for their communications and branding vertical.