7 Threats to a Positive Company Culture

warning sign of the danger of not having a positive company culture

A Positive Company Culture is Worth It
It takes constant clarity, effort and perseverance to shape and maintain a positive company culture for your people and your business.  But it’s worth it.

  • According to a Harvard Business School report, an effective culture can account for up to half of the differential in performance between organizations in the same business.
  • Our own organizational alignment research shows that cultural factors account for 40% of the difference between high and low performing companies in terms of revenue growth, profitability, customer retention, leadership effectiveness, and employee engagement

Successful organizations and leaders understand and leverage their positive corporate culture to win the talent war and to outperform their competition.

If You’ve Got It, Keep It
Let’s say you’ve worked hard to improve your culture to the point where you can be proud of how things truly get done in your organization. The known and unspoken values and assumptions that drive key business practices and behaviors are in sync with the high values you hold dear and with the strategic direction you are heading.

We know that company cultures, regardless of their strength, progress and change over time.  So it is your challenge to see that your positive company culture stays aligned with your strategy, and your talent, keeps true to your high standards of behavior and continues to be that critical variable that can set you apart from the competition.

7 Threats to a Positive Company Culture
Here are seven of the most common threats to a positive company culture – the pollutants that can undermine what you worked so hard to build:

1. Gossip
You should not allow secret whispers about anyone behind their back. When there are honest disagreements or important issues to discuss, they should be addressed openly and respectfully. Otherwise you sabotage the atmosphere of trust that is the foundation of the collaboration, innovation, and decisiveness required to succeed.

Do what it takes to have open and honest conversations so that important feelings and issues do not fester.

2. Low or Unclear Performance Standards
Do not accept behavior that is sub-standard from anyone, including yourself. The minute your team sees that you overlook mediocre results or inappropriate behavior, high performance expectations lose their influence and team morale can sink.

Clearly define and stick to relevant, fair, and meaningful standards of success and failure to protect what matters most in your positive company culture.

3. Emails as Preferred Communication
Sure, technology is a great time saver and emails can be a good way to track conversations and connect. But not at the exclusion of face-to-face conversations.  There is so much that cannot be communicated in an email – body language and empathy for example – and once in print your email thoughts cannot be retracted or easily changed.

Foster strong interpersonal relationships and meaningful one-on-one connections across the company.

4. Empty or Disproportionate Praise
We all appreciate being recognized for a job well done. However, praise that is not earned or specific has little value.  In fact, it can undermine a team’s discretionary effort.  Be sure that you give proportionate credit only where it’s due and in enough detail to show that you were really paying attention.

Make sure that you proportionately reward and recognize what matters most at your company.

5. Ineffective or Infrequent Feedback
Employees look to leaders for feedback that will help them improve their performance and fulfill their career aspirations. Negative or ineffective feedback is counterproductive.  Keep the objective of constructive feedback in mind – performance improvement and continuous learning.

Everyone should know where they stand and what is required to get where they want to go.

6. Pointing the Finger
You may know who is to blame for the latest snafu, but it often does little good to point fingers. It is better in most instances to accept mistakes as part of a continuous improvement process and to work with people to help ensure that it doesn’t happen again.  Your team will appreciate that you shoulder the responsibility as a leader and demonstrate that you have their back.

Are people afraid to make mistakes at your company?

7. Explicit or Implied Threats
It should go without saying that dominating employees through threats and fear tactics is toxic. But some insecure leaders or those under stress resort to this kind of behavior.  While threats may get short-term tactical results, the long-term negative impact on organizational health, employee engagement, and alignment can be deadly.

Weed out bullies early and often to protect your company’s cultural health and well-being.

The Bottom Line
A company culture matters – a lot.  Once you’ve achieved it, stay vigilant and see that you are not guilty of any of the top threats that can derail a positive company culture.

To understand the three components required to build a positive company culture to outperform your peers, download The 3 Must-Have Levels of a High Performance Culture

Comments are closed.

The LSA Global team was very receptive and flexible to our needs every step of the way. Their staff and facilitator demonstrated attention to detail, responsiveness, and professional courtesy. The participants were thrilled with the outcome and rated the communication skills workshop and the facilitator as ‘Excellent’. I’d highly recommend working with the LSA Global team to meet your professional development needs.

John Mastrorilli
FRDP Leader


SeaTel has found our partnership with LSA Global to be very valuable and beneficial. We turned to LSA to customize a supervisory/leadership solution to meet our needs. LSA delivered a customized top quality solution. I’d recommend LSA Global to any company looking for a best-in-class training and consulting partner.

Kortney Riddle
HR Manager

I have worked with LSA Global at previous companies and welcomed the opportunity to bring them in to support my new organization. We worked closely with LSA to design a solution for our Client Partner Teams and Management Training on both coasts. LSA designed a customized solution for our business and organizational culture. LSA is a quality organization, one that I’d recommend to any company looking for a first class training and consulting partner that makes an impact.

Laurie Torres
Chief People Officer

We consider LSA our true business partner in the areas of Learning and Organizational Development. From Strategic Planning to Presentation Skills and Management Training, they continue to provide excellent value and extremely high quality solutions – not just one time events. I recommend them to anyone looking to drive true business results.

Michelle A. Mitchell
Vice President, Worldwide Human Resources

LSA exceeded all my expectations. We interviewed 7 potential training and consulting partners and selected LSA due to their expertise, flexibility, and breadth and depth of solutions. We were able to construct a management training course from the modules most appropriate to our needs, and are able to provide additional training from their well developed portfolio of experts. Our managers galvanized as a team throughout the session and are better prepared for the rigors of a competitive market.

Mitch Mandich


Hyperion has a commitment to lifelong learning. LSA helps us provide the right business sales training, management training programs, and leadership development programs at the right time to meet the needs of both individuals and departments. I especially appreciate their ability to listen to my needs and recommend the appropriate facilitators, solutions and content.

Sarah Parks
Senior Project Manager


For our go to training outsourcing partner, LSA provides exactly what we want. As always, they deliver outstanding work!

Elizabeth Siebert
Director, Organizational Excellence & Development


We contacted LSA to help us with customized management development. LSA worked with me to identify a solution that would meet our exact needs. We decided to start at the top and ran the program for our executive team. It was such a great success that we hope to roll it out companywide. We look forward to a long-term partnership with LSA Global and their team of experts.

Barry L. Byrd, SPHR
Human Resources Manager

We recently partnered with LSA Global to offer our Supervisors and Managers a customized two-day management training program. Everyone who attended said it was by far the best management training program they had ever attended. The content was rich and highly interactive. The case studies were relevant. Each participant walked away from the training much better equipped to lead their teams.

Jeff Coon
Director of Human Resources

I continue to be impressed by the level of leadership development and management expertise and quality of advice and facilitation that LSA has to offer. What a smart and client-centric group of great people who really know how to help leaders attract, engage, develop and retain top talent.

Tracy Esposito
Director, HR Business Partner

We partnered with LSA Global to help us invest in our people in the areas of performance coaching, diversity, and inclusion. They focused on helping us succeed and were very flexible in meeting our specific needs. LSA Global exceeded my expectations from a speed, quality, and value standpoint. I would recommend LSA Global to anyone looking for a true business partner.

Anita Luckinbill
Director, Human Resources

We value our relationship with LSA Global. We came to LSA because we wanted to improve overall behavioral based interviewing capabilities of our managers to increase the probability of both hiring top talent and future leaders. LSA designed a highly customized solution for our business and culture. We are currently rolling out this solution to our leaders. I would highly recommend LSA Global as a top quality resource.

Rae Phillips
HR Project Manager - Training & Development, PHR

LSA’s consultant designed and delivered a half-day team building solution for our recent conference. It included careful customization to integrate the design with our new mission and values. Everyone had fun and identified key issues with our teamwork. Altogether a great program!

Bob Ward
Director of HR

Avon’s success is dependent on strong relationships among our Customers, Representatives, Associates, and outside resources we hire to help us meet our business objectives. We were very pleased with the results from working with LSA Global to design and facilitate a custom program for our events management team. LSA demonstrated responsiveness, flexibility, and an innovative approach to working with us.

Deanna Rudnitsky
Senior Manager, HR Destiny Sales Region

I am very impressed with the quality of work and talent. LSA did a great job of listening to my needs and providing the exact management training program expertise I needed to get the job done.

Don Pryor
Director, Business Planning & Analysis

Evaluate your Performance



Download key published insights and tools from industry experts highlighting best practices in the areas of talent, strategy and culture.


Health Checks

Health Checks

Want to know how you stack up against leading organizations?  Receive a complimentary benchmarking analysis courtesy of an LSA Expert.




Get up to speed on timely solutions critical to your business. Published by LSA Experts based upon client feedback and key industry trends.




First we identify the key metrics you want to improve. Then we assemble a dedicated team of elite experts who have successfully solved similar problems with similar clients.



Stay up to do date with the latest information on how we help high growth companies align their culture and talent with strategy.


Case Studies

Client Case Studies

Real world consulting and training approaches from LSA projects, providing insights on how your company can outperform the competition.