Culture of a Team

Culture of a Team

In sociology, a team with a purpose, no matter what it’s doing, goes through 4 phases; forming, storming, norming and performing. The team should be creating it’s own norms in order to perform, and fight for the norms during storming.

Hyper productivity level for a Scrum team is way beyond performing. It’s actually the place where team basically has no trust issues and team is in a high level state of self-organisation.

The question usually raises at this point; what happens if we change the team formation?, e.g. a new person has joined in? An ordinary Scrum team at the performing level might need to get new norms because the teams has some new elements and the nature of chemistry needs equilibrium.

On the other hand, if the team is in the hyper productive stage, the same situation will be observed, if the team is not working in that level for too long. If the team is in the hyper productive level for a long time, then the affect of the new person won’t cause the team to go down to a lower level. This actually is about the morphogenic fields (as Jeff Sutherland states at his google speech) which says, if a culture is strong in some place, the adaptation period for the joiners will be shorter. I think, same is true for those teams not in hyper productive but performing level.  So, if the joiner is a change agent and try to change the culture inside the team, the joiner will be changing quickly at the opposite direction or the team’s direction.

In conclusion, the culture created inside a team is very strong as compared to individuals. The seeds should be planted very carefully during the earlier phases otherwise it can cause the team become a monster that eats everything for breakfast. (Ref: Peter Drucker, Culture eats strategy for breakfast)


Ahmet Akdağ is a consultant and trainer helping organisations through their Agile transformations. He helps organisations adapt Scrum and other Agile processes in the right way by teaching the fundamentals to all levels in the organisations, coaching teams and designing the organisational principles-practices-tools for enterprise Agility.
Contributing to and leading over 20 organisational Agile transformation projects in small to large scale enterprises and coaching over 200 Agile Teams, Ahmet’s expertise on management and framework design directed him to create high quality solutions and best practices within the fundamental principles of Agile processes. He has been coaching and consulting companies with a combination of extensive know-how and experience on both the process and practices side of Agile. Ahmet is also the Co-founder of the Agile association in his local market and in Middle East.

Ahmet Akdağ