Healthy culture: how organisational behaviour changes lives

Healthy culture: how organisational behaviour changes lives

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Have you ever worked in an environment that made you feel energised and engaged? Reflect for a moment on how working in this culture inspired you to behave. Have you ever experienced a workplace culture that drained your spirit and undermined your commitment? Contemplate what this meant for the level of contribution you chose to make.

When people are energised they are entirely more likely to behave in ways that enable success. Energised people are more likely to be focused, driven, determined and resilient in the way they go about their work. People who are drained of positive energy are those most likely to be resistant, pessimistic or guarded.  When we lack energy we are all more likely to behave in ways that undermine our own success, as well as that of other people around us.    

Put simply, people who enjoy working with their colleagues and trust their manager are more likely to be energised and strive to succeed. The impacts of an organisation's culture, however, reach well beyond work performance and business results. By creating a healthy workplace culture every leader has a double-edged opportunity to achieve better performance outcomes and positively impact upon the quality of people’s lives. Four ways organisational behavior changes lives include:

  1. Self respect and confidence
    People and circumstances we encounter at work have the power to influence what we believe about ourselves. Our sense of personal value reflected in the depth of our self-respect is essential and profoundly impacts the choices we make, and ultimately the life we are able to create.
  1. Health and well-being
    When people are subjected to harassment, discrimination or bullying at work the impact to their health and well-being can be devastating. Anxiety, depression and panic attacks are just a few examples of the mental health challenges people endure as a consequence of being treated badly at work.
  1. Home life
    People don’t typically separate their work and home life. No matter how hard they try, most people allow their experiences at work to be reflected in the person they are at home. When our experiences at work detrimentally impact upon our health, well-being, behaviour and job performance, our loved ones often feel the ramifications.
  1. Social responsibility
    We live in communities where business decisions impact our lives every day. Regardless of how we interact with the world of business, the decisions made, actions taken and outcomes achieved have the potential to reach out and influence our circumstances.

Karen Gately is a leadership and people-management specialist and a founder of Ryan Gately, a specialist HR consultancy practice.

She is also the author of The People Manager’s Toolkit: A Practical guide to getting the best from people and The Corporate Dojo: Driving extraordinary results through spirited people. For more information visit

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