Top seven mistakes that are killing your office culture

How much does company culture affect firm performance? Apparently, a lot. Here are several common mistakes that are likely holding you back from building a thriving workplace.

Research has shown that a great office culture leads to greater retention, enhanced productivity, and increased innovation. But building a resilient and dynamic office culture is not always as simple as it might sound.

Numerous common missteps can compromise your initiatives and adversely impact your employees’ enthusiasm, commitment, and ultimately, their welfare.

A recent survey by Deloitte showed that 60% of employees and 75% of C-Suite say they’re seriously considering quitting their jobs if their employer doesn’t focus more on wellbeing.

And as a business leader, HR manager, or decision-maker in your organisation, it’s imperative to foresee potential pitfalls and red flags. This will allow you to cultivate an office culture that genuinely fosters wellbeing, happiness, and efficiency.

That’s why we’ve outlined 7 common mistakes that are killing your office culture:

1. Insufficient Recognition and Reward

Studies have shown that 70% of employees would be more motivated and happier at work simply if their managers said “thank you” more often.

Recognition is a potent motivator, and its absence can leave employees feeling undervalued and unacknowledged, leading to reduced productivity and job satisfaction.

To avoid this, build a culture that consistently acknowledges and rewards hard work and accomplishments – whether through simple recognition or more significant gestures like bonuses or promotions.

2. Neglecting Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity and inclusion should be non-negotiable in this day and age. Not least because the workplace is only going to become more diverse. But studies have also shown that having a diverse team means you’ll make better decisions 87% of the time – leading to further business success.

Neglecting the importance of a diverse and inclusive workplace can result in an exclusive culture, stifling innovation, creativity, and employee engagement. That’s why, in order to establish a culture that esteems all voices, it’s vital to explicitly respect and appreciate each employee’s distinctive experiences, viewpoints, and skills.

3. Failing to Promote Open Communication

Transparency and open communication represent vital components of a thriving office culture. Nonetheless, adhering to a top-down communication style or discouraging employees from articulating their thoughts and concerns can engender a culture of distrust.

Research from our recent YuLife x YouGov survey shows that employees would be more willing (72%) and more honest ( 67%) in sharing feedback/data if their employer disclosed exactly how they’d be using it.

This is direct proof that having open dialogue and feedback at all levels fosters a culture of mutual respect and trust – and ultimately, a shared sense of community within an organisation.

4. Overlooking Work-Life Balance

Employees are not machines, and overlooking the importance of a healthy work-life balance can lead to burnout and elevated employee turnover.

A 2021 report shows that 65% of UK job seekers prioritise work-life balance over pay. By implementing flexible work policies and encouraging employees to take time off, you can maintain a healthy equilibrium between their professional and personal lives – and it will ensure you attract and retain top talent.

5. Neglecting Investment in Professional Development

As the saying goes “stagnation is death”. Failing to invest in your employee’s continuous professional development can result in a disengaged workforce.

It’s a vital part not only of business development but in helping your employees feel appreciated and that you value their success as individuals beyond the office walls.

86% of employees said they’d consider switching jobs if another company offered them more personal development opportunities.

That’s why it’s more important than ever to prioritise the provision of learning and development opportunities for your employees to enhance their skills and convey your commitment to their career advancement.

6. Absence of Shared Vision and Values

Having a sense of shared purpose and aligning values is what employees look for these days – especially amongst Gen Zers who are the fastest-growing working demographic. In fact, 71% of Gen Z employees say they’d research a company’s values and ethics before considering joining a company.

But the important part is making sure each of those values aligns with employees that are brought onto the team, and they’re lived, communicated and practised daily.That doesn’t mean you can paste up your company values on the bulletin board and forget about them. It means you need to reiterate your values every chance you get and have a strategy in place to keep speaking those values –  and living them – so your team will follow.

7. Disregarding Employee Wellbeing

To close, employees who are content, healthy, and well-supported tend to be more efficient and involved in their tasks. Yet, numerous companies underestimate the significance of nurturing wellbeing.

Yet, research shows that for every €1 invested in workplace health initiatives, organisations see a €2.20 return.

YuLife firmly believe that employee wellbeing should be a priority, not an afterthought. Leveraging tools such as YuLife’s gamified app and Wellbeing Hub can invigorate employees to assume control of their health and wellbeing, thereby enhancing morale and productivity.

About YuLife

YuLife are working to reimagine the insurance industry by protecting lives, rewarding living and inspiring life. They’re on a mission to transform traditional insurance into a life-enhancing experience each employee will value and use daily.

How does it work?

YuLife’s award-winning app uses behavioural science and game mechanics to reward your people for living well while offering protection in case of crisis. With their top-rated employee assistance programme, your team gets access to mental, financial and social support, virtual GPs, nutritionists, life coaches and more to help them live their best lives.

Because they believe that your employees should benefit from their insurance from day one – and that wellbeing should be accessible every day, for everyone.


IoD members get free access to YuLife’s award-winning health and wellbeing app. In addition, IoD members benefit from a 5% discount* on YuLife’s group risk insurance (including Income Protection, Life Insurance and Critical Illness cover), with access to the app for your employees.

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