Every office around the world has a different culture. Each team thinks differently, gels differently and uses different strategies to boost their productivity. Of the many different types of cultures, which are the most effective?

A culture of strong leadership thrusts high performers into new lifestyles and tax brackets. Companies in which this culture is prevalent are likely to promote a new hire to a senior management position in only a few years if that recruit proves to be talented. However, this culture can lead to the marginalisation of employees who are creatively skilled, but not target-driven. This can result in a business missing out on vital skills, as talented but unmotivated employees who are not seeing their hard work and achievements validated by senior management, begin to look for opportunities elsewhere.

The same thing can be said for sales-driven office cultures, in which the latest target or quota is more important than the well-being or ideas of individual employees. In such a culture, high-flyers often thrive and take home huge commissions, but the business can find itself lacking in other areas, having placed too much emphasis on a single type of personality when training staff.

On the other hand, it is vital for businesses to maintain a strong culture of drive among their employees, if they are to remain competitive. It can be difficult to find the line between motivating employees to make a sufficient level of profit for the business and creating a culture where nobody feels as though their contribution isn’t valued. A culture of constant improvement is essential to bridging this gap. By approaching each and every employee and setting them personalised performance targets, everyone can be made to feel that progress is achievable, without them becoming so stressed that they are forced out of the business.

Such a culture is vitally important in retail, where client requests can sometimes appear outlandish and consume a large quantity of an employee’s time. If employees know that there are set limits to the concessions they can make to individual clients, but that senior management will seriously consider any ideas they have for resolving the situation, then an employee can deal with the situation calmly, knowing that they won’t face criticism from both their customer and their boss. This flexibility of approach differs to a target-driven environment, where the rigidity of policy can cause conflict between customer service agent and client, leaving staff ending each day feeling disappointed.

This culture of constant improvement is relevant to a variety of other sectors. A pursuit of constant innovation, renewal, and reinvention is vital if a company is to become successful. While achievements should be celebrated within a company, a culture of constant reflection will only enhance these achievements. By considering how procedures could be done differently, in order to eliminate inefficiency, it is possible for even the best companies to improve their productivity and overall performance. The key here is to eliminate waste. If staff are feeling as though their time is being wasted or that they are being subjected to needless targets, they will become disenfranchised. The best way to keep your entire team motivated and productive is to constantly push for improvements in efficiency and performance, whilst tailoring your approach to the individual needs of each of your employees.

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