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Building Team Culture

The term "team culture" gets thrown around a lot. And it often brings images of holiday parties and ping pong tournaments. 🎉 A commitment to creating a strong culture for in-office and remote teams leave many managers and teammates asking the same question:  What is our team culture? And how can a software company that helps you facilitate retrospectives - like Retrium - help you build and sustain a thriving team culture?

What is team culture?

Great question! A team or company culture can be defined as the attitudes and values the team encourages. High-performing agile teams know that a culture that promotes creativity, collaboration, and innovation can make the difference between good team performance and great team performance.

In other words, effective team cultures encourage everyone to safely share their best ideas. You can often recognize an effective culture through their shared common goals, common understanding of team values, a corporate culture that values frequent feedback, and psychological safety for the entire team where each team member feels comfortable sharing ideas.

Can a team retreat, ping-pong tournament, and a happy hour contribute to culture? Absolutely! We love a great retreat and regularly take time away from our work to reconnect with our teammates. 😄  But these are all part of creating the psychologically safe environment for constructive feedback and honesty that leads to a truly productive culture and positive employee experience for both in-office and remote teams alike.

Read more about how to build your team's psychological safety
in our Ultimate Guide To Agile Retrospectives.

How do you build and sustain a strong team culture?

When you think about the most successful companies in the world, they all have cultures that value feedback and honesty regardless of seniority level.

Team leaders striving to improve - or even create - a strong culture have their work cut for them to overcome many of the embedded values around strict loyalty and obedience that have defined workplace interactions for decades.

An innovative culture will not be built overnight. And even once it is established within the team's performance, effective team leaders will continue to grow and adapt their culture as the company grows.

How many of us completely overhauled their team goals and expectations in 2020?

Culture is built both in and outside of the meeting space. A key element for all successful teams is to align on team goals. Creating a common goal creates alignment and focus during team meetings and confidence when teams are collaborating. When everyone better understands what they are doing, discussions are able to focus on the how.


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