What is Team Culture and How Do You Improve It?


Put simply, team culture is how people work together towards a common goal, and how they treat each other.


Team culture can be made up of the values, beliefs, attitudes and behaviours shared by a team.


By working together to create a strong team culture, you add many benefits to your team which include:

  • Increased levels of enjoyment

  • A strong sense of infrastructure within the team

  • Members become much more engaged

  • There are fewer incidences of interpersonal conflicts

  • Members feel their contributions are valued

  • Others are drawn to your team and want to be part of it

To build a good team culture it’s a good idea to have the whole team contribute to the discussion of what the team culture should be, after all, they are part of the team! Some of the things your team might want to discuss in building your team culture are:

Discuss your own team culture:

  • What are the teams' core values?

  • Are the values shared by everyone in the team?

  • What are the values reflected in the teams' behaviour?

  • How do you ensure the team culture is communicated to the team?

  • What is the process for updating or improving the team culture?

  • What are the policies and protocols that guide team behaviour?

Look at other team cultures:

  • Behaviours of other teams

  • Behaviours that reflect their values

  • The team image

  • Activities for building their team culture

  • Team engagement activities

  • Feedback on team performance/behaviour via reviews

Identify where your team culture could improve:

  • Team values

  • Team member values

  • Behavioural norms

  • Leadership activities

Develop strategies to improve your team culture:

  • Partake in team-building activities to strengthen the team bonds

  • Partake in activities that will require a leader to step up

  • Develop some symbols or rituals to support good culture

  • Address flawed collective behaviours

  • Communicate updates with the whole team

To ensure your team culture stays strong, it is a good idea to acknowledge and/or reward team members who reflect the team culture, ensure the leadership team all reflect the team culture, and when looking to add new members to the team, it’s a great start if you can ensure they suit the team culture.

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