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How Ground Floor Leaders Change Organizational Culture


Thu Nov 05 2015

How Ground Floor Leaders Change Organizational Culture

“That’ll never happen here!”

How often have you heard this statement at your company? It’s a common phrase at many organizations and can create a toxic culture that promotes negativity and “idea-bashing” behavior. If you work at a place like this, you probably have thought to yourself, “If only I could change this culture!”


Well, the good news is you can! All you have to do is exhibit one uncommon characteristic: courage.

Having courage is not easy. In a world filled with opinions and stereotypes, we can be protective of our reputation and character. Each time you say something, act in a certain way, or make a decision, other people will form a perception of you and start to think about you in a particular way. And in the corporate world, unfortunately, what other people think of you determines your career path to a great extent.

If you are not satisfied with the culture at your company, I would challenge you to be a ground floor leader and change it! Even if you don’t have the fancy title or corner office, you have the capability to have more influence over your peers than you think. But of course, you will need to have some courage.

How can courage change your culture? Here are a few ways in which courage will change the way people think in your organization.

Courage Has Influence

When you have the courage to go against the norm and advocate for a new idea or innovation, you will find that your behavior has a great amount of influence over your peers. You will earn the respect of your peers for doing the uncommon and being a voice for the rest of the group. Many people have great ideas, but don’t speak up. You will be the courageous one and looked upon as a leader.


Courage Will Get Results

It’s very simple: People who are courageous enough to be bold and stand out are often the ones who get things accomplished. Nothing great was ever achieved by sitting back and being a spectator. By having courage and being persistent, results will eventually happen. However, new ideas will take a lot of implementation, and you need to be prepared to face rejection. But if you are courageous and persistent, results will come and you will be the leader of a great culture change.

Courage Is Contagious

Sometimes people are afraid to try something until someone else attempts it and is successful. Once you start showing the courage to speak up and advocate for what you believe in, other people will start to follow and feel more comfortable doing so. When you have a group of courageous individuals, leadership thrives and innovation becomes the norm. Be a trendsetter and have courage!

Ground floor leaders are courageous individuals. They know how to effectively challenge the status quo and be culture change agents. Try inserting some courage into your work practices and watch the results happen!

Editor’s Note: This post is adapted from “The Best Way to Change Organizational Culture” posted on the LinkedIn Pulse blog.

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