6 Trends that Will Impact Your Culture This Year

Posted by Jenni Catron on Jan 4, 2023 1:01:00 AM

Every year presents its surprises. As much as we try to plan and anticipate what the year ahead will hold, part of leadership is being able to anticipate the possibilities and respond to the realities. 


I wholeheartedly believe that your organizational culture should be at the top of your priority list every year but each year different factors may affect when and how your culture will be impacted. 


One of the reasons my company is called 4Sight is that we want to equip you to know what to anticipate to help you lead well. I want to equip you with the foresight for success. 


With that in mind, here are 6 trends I’m observing in organizational life that I believe will impact your team culture this year. 


1) Purpose is increasingly important.


A clear purpose is essential for engaging your team. 


O.C. Tanner’s Global Culture report for 2023 shares that employees “want the sense of fulfillment that comes from doing work that has a purpose and feeling that they belong to their workplace community.” 


Do your employees understand the purpose of your organization? When was the last time you articulated your organization’s purpose and helped your employees understand how they fit into that purpose. Oftentimes when we’re under pressure we focus on communicating goals and tactics and assume the why is clear. Don’t leave your purpose to chance. 


2) Economic headwinds are going to require lean, effective teams. 


I suspect you’re already being conscious of your budget and hiring decisions for 2023. The predictions for the economic outlook are varied and the wisest thing we can do is to prepare to run lean. If you haven’t already done so, you need to reevaluate your team structure and make adjustments for staffing with a leaner team.


The critical factor here is that you bring your team into this discuss so that they understand the impact of economic headwinds and why you’re choosing to be conservative in your staffing decisions. If they realize this is a proactive step to prepare you to weather any financial challenges and is coming from a desire to protect current staff roles, you are likely to increase morale rather than deflate it. 


3) Your mid-level leaders are going to experience increased pressure. 


Over the last few years mid-level leaders have absorbed more responsibility either by attrition or promotion. In some cases they have stepped into new roles of leadership and need equipping for their responsibilities. In other cases, experienced leaders have simply taken on more scope of responsibility. Either way they need to be supported. 


Don’t cut your leadership budget. If anything, expand it so that you can better equip the key leaders in your organization.


4) Recruiting strong talent is going to continue to be a challenge. 


The labor force is tight and with the housing market so tough, recruiting employees especially if it requires a relocation is going to be a hard sell. After nearly 3 years of upheaval in all aspects of life, people are hungry for peace and stability. A new opportunity (ie new culture) will need to be really compelling to inspire people to take the risks associated with a job change. 

5) Retention will be a superpower… and a super-saver.


Do some simple math around how much it costs you to recruit and hire new team members and you have a business case for why retention matters. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) reported that “on average it costs a company 6 to 9 months of an employee’s salary to replace him or her.” 


Beyond the financial benefit of keeping your turnover low, the impact to your culture is exponential. Tenured staff know your organizational culture, carry institutional knowledge, and are therefore equipped to more efficiently help you deliver on your goals. 

6) The expectations for leadership will continue to increase.


I recently heard an interview with Marshall Goldsmith on the Leading the Future of Work podcast where he said “Leaders are better than ever yet the feedback about leaders is worse than ever. The expectations for leaders has changed.” 


Toxic leaders are meeting their match in employees who will no longer tolerate miserable work experiences. The power balance in organizations has shifted and it’s elevating the need for healthier leadership. 


One of my deep convictions is that leadership is sacred work. We as leaders need to know and understand the significance of our influence and the power we have to change and affect the lives of those we lead. When we lead from this understanding we’ll be better equipped to usher in an era of leadership that will rise to the expectations of those we serve.

Leaders, here’s the good news… you can fight back against these trends. By being proactive in addressing these trends you can combat the effects of them. You won’t avoid them altogether but with greater awareness you’ll be better equipped to lead yourself and lead your team more effectively this year.


I’m cheering for you. Keep leading well!

Jenni Catron



Topics: Leadership, Culture

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