A friend called me last night and the first words out of his mouth were, “If I have to do another freaking chant at work I’m going to walk to the nearest wall and bang my head against it.”
Turns out that in order to create a sense of comradery at their office the leadership team decided they should have a chant they sing at the end of all major meetings.
Now I’ve worked in offices where people break into spontaneous song, or sign up for American Idol types of competitions, or do sing-off’s randomly. But those were companies where the culture was spontaneous and goofy. And employees dictated when and where these outbursts were going to happen. But this chanting company is a pretty buttoned-up place where people are quiet and wear suits and ties…chanting just seems strange.
And the results is complete awkwardness. The moral of the story: Don’t force culture. It’s fake and uncomfortable.
And please, don’t ask your employees to chant.
Editors Note: When it comes to her professional life, Marisa Keegan is passionate about three things; employee engagement, leadership development, and corporate culture. She has helped lead the culture and engagement initiatives at two nationally recognized great places to work; Rackspace as Culture Maven and Modea as Talent Manger. Today Marisa consults and leads seminars for organizations looking to increase productivity by focusing on management training and employee engagement.