Date: March 12, 2007 Volume 2, Number 10
In this Issue:
What is Climate and Why Should I Care
Strategies to Improve Climate
We may not pay much attention to the climate of a business or organization if the atmosphere there is benign or unremarkable. It doesn't seem to strike people much, one way or the other, when they walk into a business and the emotional tone is neither really positive or negative, and the employees seem fairly busy at work. Walk into a organization, however, where there is a strong negative undercurrent, and you will most likely notice it fairly quickly. Its almost like you've just been struck by a blow! On the flipside, walk into a business where there is a very positive and favorable energy, and you notice quickly, something very different. People seem happy and more productive! This is a place, thinking to youself, that you might like to work and whatever "it" is, you'd like to bottle it and take it with you. These examples illustrate the spectrum of different climates.
Climate is very important to businesses and organizations. The emotional tone of a workplace directly affects the performance and productivity of employees. It affects employee retention and turn-over, because employees' satisfaction is effected by the climate. Have you ever thought that you spend too much of your time and your life at work to be grossly unsatisfied and unhappy! This is a huge consequence of a really negative work climate. Ultimately, the climate can also have an affect on the customer service that is provided.
Depending on the situation and what is needed in the organization, enhance your skills and seek to become adept at "Authoritative", "Affiliative", "Democratic", and "Coaching" styles of leadership. Practicing and rehearsing these different styles, will help you to naturally call upon the appropriate style and effectively deliver it.
Appreciative Inquiry is another technique to use, to positively enhance the climate of a group. Therefore, pay attention to the language that you use and what you are focusing on, as this is going to impact the reality and where you're going. Also, seek to enlist others in your organization by asking them what works and when things were really well. You may wish to reference the December newsletter for an introduction to Appreciative Inquiry.
For personalized support toward improving the climate of your organization or your other professional needs, contact Nancy Schill at firstname.lastname@example.org or 512.947.5447.
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