One of the main issues I see when evaluating a business’s culture is the inability, or unwillingness, to acknowledge and address problems. As we all know in our everyday lives, if you don’t acknowledge a problem, you can not change, grow or improve. This can be devastating for a business or organization and it exists more than not.
People don’t quit jobs.
They quit: poor managers, poor compensation, poor culture, lack of growth, and lack of support.
If you are losing your top talent, it’s a sign something needs fixing.– Author Unknown
I saw this on a social media post and it spoke to me. The inability to acknowledge and address problems is a major issue in many organizations. It can lead to a number of problems, including:
Failure to identify and address root causes. If a business doesn’t acknowledge that there’s a problem, it’s unlikely to be able to identify the root cause of the problem. This makes it difficult to implement effective solutions.
Loss of trust and morale. When employees see that their concerns are not being acknowledged, they’re likely to lose trust in their leaders and become demoralized. This can lead to decreased productivity and turnover.
Damage to the brand. If a business’s problems become public knowledge, it can damage the brand’s reputation. This can make it difficult to attract new customers and retain existing ones.
Unfortunately, the blame game happens so much in organizations that often it takes someone from the outside to turn that finger pointing outward to pointing inward. CEO blaming management. Management blaming staff. Staff blaming customers. Stop playing the blame game and start changing.
Here’s how to address a problem:
- Acknowledge the problem exists.
- Address the role you play.
- Figure out what needs to be changed.
- Write out “baby steps” to make change.
- Get all the players involved.
- Map out an action plan and timelines.
You might be saying, “well it’s not that easy!” and yes, you would be right. That is why starting small is important. Especially if an issue has been going on for years and is a systemic problem within the organization.
In one non-profit organization, one of the main problems was staff (made up of mostly late teens/early twenties) would fall back into acting like the youth whom they were responsible for. So I helped them design shirts that would remind them of who they were to the young people they were taking care of. The shirts had the logo in the middle and the following around the logo: Role Model, Teacher, Motivator, Superhero, Mentor, Counselor, Trainer. This way they were reminded everyday of the expectation of them as staff. Small step but big impact.
Creating a culture of problem-solving is not easy, but it’s essential for the long-term success of any business. By acknowledging problems and taking steps to address them, businesses can improve their performance and avoid costly mistakes. Here are some additional tips for creating a culture of problem-solving:
- Set a clear example from the top. Leaders should be open about their own mistakes and demonstrate a willingness to learn from them.
- Reward employees for speaking up and solving problems. When employees are rewarded for their problem-solving skills, it encourages others to do the same.
- Make problem-solving a part of the company’s culture. This means embedding problem-solving principles into the company’s training programs, performance reviews, and decision-making processes.
By following these tips, businesses can create a culture that is open to change, growth, and improvement. See It, Own It, Solve It