This week’s newsletter from the RawSignal group was straight fire, and they have a point:
“If your culture has a problem with remote, your managers have a job to do. Management can tear down the processes, meetings, and expectations that aren’t working, and build new ones as needed to get shit done. If your culture has a problem with clear expectations and accountability, your managers should be all over it. It’s literally what we pay them for. And if your culture has a problem with burning people out? Your managers should stop fucking doing that. Plan better, say no, communicate risk. The buck has to stop somewhere.”
I had a former coworker in a Training and Development role who used to use this phrase often and I have since taken it to heart when thinking about not only how I expect training attendees to act, but also how we should expect all of our people to act. “We are all well-paid professionals here, act like it.”
What I appreciate about the newsletter that I’ve linked below is that they go out of their way to point out how often we use language about a workplace culture that makes it seem like something we have no control over. It reminds me of the weather this time of year in South Louisiana. Everything we plan in the Summer is subject to the weather. An outdoor activity might get canceled because of storms, heat, hurricanes, etc. Weather events happen to us. We get no say.
That’s not what is happening in your workplace. (Well, your workplace may need to shut down in the face of a hurricane, granted.) Culture is not happening to your organization. Culture is what you make as a group. If things are not getting done, communication is poor, employees lack direction, etc. the office culture may be partly to blame, but the fix mostly involves creating a different one, through better management. Nothing else is going to fix it. Being in the office three days a week, open office plans, more meetings, etc.
None of it matters if your managers don’t know how to manage. If they don’t, there’s your culture.
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