I remember a science teacher in my past telling me the simple definition of climate: weather over a period of time. And, when we are talking about organizational climate, it’s the interactions between people in the company on a day-to-day basis. An observer could sit back and watch how the receptionist talks to the CFO when transferring a call, or the conversation in the break room between 2 co-workers, or how a client gets greeted and escorted to an office–those interactions begin to tell a story. Hundreds of those interactions reveal the climate.
What kind of climate are you orchestrating as a leader in your organization? Is it healthy or bordering on toxic? What makes a climate healthy? Some examples:
- open, direct communication
- courtesy–putting others’ needs first
- giving people heads-ups
- addressing complaints to only those involved, or who can fix the problem
- friendliness and warmth, no matter what your mood
Whatever the leader models will eventually trickle among the ranks. However, even if you are not the main leader, you can be a leader and “affect the weather patterns” in your little department of the company. Influence is contagious–so don’t ever think you cannot make a difference with positivity.
If you want to talk more about organizational climate, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.