Subcultures hide in plain sight

When an organization’s predominant culture fails to connect with its employees, there is huge danger. If team members don’t want to work in that culture, they will create a subculture. This will often be a locus of rebellion. For rebellion read low productivity, cynicism, infighting and early exits.

Leaders guard against subcultures as if they are pulling weeds from a garden.  However, it is helpful to identify what drives subculture.  We can illuminate blind spots when we understand why subcultures emerge.

Subcultures emerge when people feel different…when they feel like they are not like the others on the team.

Subcultures emerge when people feel excluded…when they don’t feel like they belong.

Subcultures emerge when people feel ignored…when they feel like they don’t make valuable contributions.

Subcultures are disruptive.  Sometimes that’s good.  Often times, it undermines the team.

What subculture exists on your team and what is it telling you?

More on culture…

What is culture?

Don’t look for a great work culture somewhere else.

You don’t like your company culture? Fine.

How do you create culture?

The Culture Pendulum

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