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Google, the company, did what it does best and collected data on what teams and organisations need for success. Since it’s our favourite topic, we’ve matched it with actions to create a SuccessCulture.

Success Culture Our passion for creating successful workplace culture has no professional bounds. We love helping organisations find their edge because the benefits of SuccessCulture reach further than a project, team or workplace.

It’s about the individuals who create the projects and make up the team and workplace and about what matters to them.

And this research Google has done around team behaviours that magnify the collective intelligence totally backs our work up.

Google really gets the ROI when it comes to investment in learning and development of its teams and has done extensive research around what does and doesn’t work. A fantastic example is the study of employee interviews and over 10,000 manager reviews on what makes a highly effective manager. Turns out having a manager who takes an interest in their team’s lives and careers (aka empathy/ Team Intelligence) was in the top three of the most important attributes. Here’s what we wrote about empathy and how it powers team success.

The study we want to share with you today, however, is a two-year study of 180 teams that focussed on a team’s most successful traits.

This Inc article offers a great explanation of the research results of the five key characteristics of enhanced teams which includes:

Teamwork-meeting - success culture1. Dependability.

2. Structure and clarity.

3. Meaning.

4. Impact.

5. Psychological Safety.

Here are some practical ways to implement each.

1. Dependability

Dependability, accountability, competence, reliability these words all relate to building trust. A culture of trust can do remarkable things for an organisation. Research has shown people who trust each other are more productive, feel a higher degree of loyalty to their team and organisation, and are also known to give outstanding service.

How can you create a culture of dependability?

We wrote an article on accountability that covers this where we delved deep into the extraordinary power of showing up, the truth about why we often don’t, and how easy it is to make a change, such as

  1. Giving up excuses.
  2. Giving up blame/finger pointing.
  3. Giving up looking good and seek clarification on what is expected of you.

For more read this article on Accountability: The Number 1 Habit for Success

2. Structure and Clarity

When it comes to developing workplace synergy, defining the right core values for your business is one of the best ways to bring your team together and keep them on track.

Values are how you do things to make you successful and they take time to develop. So where do you start? We believe there are 5 Steps to Creating a Success Culture which include:

  1. Starting with Your Why
  2. Questioning Your Values
  3. Strengthening Your Team Intelligence™ (TeamQ™)
  4. Taking Action, and
  5. Keep Moving

When it comes to setting guiding principles for your organisation, it is important to align your personal values with the values of your company, and its culture for success. To do this, your purpose needs to be clear and you need to articulate how your values are actionable on a daily basis.

With your leaders, we recommend that you spend time articulating what behaviours underpin each value. Start each behaviour with “I am…” or “We are…” to focus on ownership.

You also need to understand your team and their needs. When leaders and teams listen, really listen, using empathy to comprehend what each individual is thinking or feeling without attempting to change or fix them or solve the problem, the person feels appreciated as a human being; they feel valued. And this is the space where trust and highly effective teams evolve – effective teams with a shared purpose.

Read more about the 5 Steps to Creating a Success Culture

3. Meaning

This relates to the importance of work having personal significance to each member. It gives people their purpose. After safety and belonging, purpose according to Daniel Coyle in his book Culture Code is what we need to build a Success Culture.

Cultural and business success comes hand in hand when you focus your business on the needs of your people, from customers and employees to suppliers, shareholders and the wider community.

Your team is full of people who want to be valued, who want to feel like they are contributing, and that they are great contributors to the business, as well as other people’s successes. They are people who need to feel like they are part of something, that they matter and belong.

Getting connected with your team and them with each other is the first step to achieving this. This is what we call developing Team Intelligence. When a team is at the ultimate level of Team Intelligence, they’re working to achieve better results as a cohesive unit through championing each other and winning – together in their success culture.

Here are 10 Ways to Immediately Improve your Communication (get connected)

3. Impact

This relates to the value placed on working for the greater good.

There’s a lot to be said about how we contribute to an organisation, but sadly, it’s often not communicated. However, teams who understand and appreciate the value of each other’s role have a better chance of success in their working relationships. What’s more, people like to feel like they are contributing; that their function makes a difference – and making a difference is one of the greatest human motivators.

Research shows that much of human behaviour, thoughts and emotion stems from our psychological need to belong. For some, belonging and attachment to co-workers is a greater motivator than money.

Read more about getting your team to work together intelligently to maximise performance, outcomes and standards of work by maximising the quality of working lives both individually and as a collective.

Team intelligence5. Psychological Safety

Psychological safety is the most important factor contributing to a team’s effectiveness according to Google’s research on what makes a perfect team.

What is psychological safety? ‘a shared belief that the team is safe for interpersonal risk taking.[1] It can be defined as “being able to show and employ one’s self without fear of negative consequences of self-image, status or career”’

Or in other words…a shared belief by team members they can trust their working environment.

The Edelman TRUST BAROMETER is an annual survey that measures trust in government, media, businesses and NGO’s globally. 2018 is its 18th edition and here are some of the key findings:

  • Nearly 7 in 10 respondents say that building trust is the No. 1 job for CEOs, ahead of high-quality products and services.
  • Trust sits with individuals, not institutions.
  • Specifically to Australia: ‘In 2018, trust in Australia continues to decline across all four key institutions: media, business, government and NGOs. This has resulted with Australia sitting just four percentage points above the world’s least trusting country, Russia.

You can build a SuccessCulture of trust in the workplace – and again genuine connection with those who make up your organisation is the key.

Read this extensive article on trust.


Gabriella-Horak-WYEWant to create a SuccessCulture based on Google’s 5 traits of successful in teams? Match each with the goal of achieving Team Intelligence.

  • Want dependability?
  • Want structure and clarity?
  • Want meaning?
  • Want impact?
  • Want psychological safety?

Develop your Team Intelligence. I can help.

We have the edge. We are the edge. We share the edge.