I work with a lot of legacy Java and RPG code on an internal company application. As you might expect, a lot of the code is written in many different styles, and often is difficult to read because of poorly named variables, inconsistent formatting, and contradictory comments (if they're there at all).
Also, a good amount of code is not robust. Many times code is pushed to production quickly by the more experienced programmers, while code by newer programmers is held back by "code reviews" that IMO are unsatisfactory. (They usually take the form of, "It works, must be ok," than a serious critique of the code.) We have a fair number of production issues, which I feel could be lessened by giving more thought to the original design and testing.
I have been working for this company for about 4 months, and have been complimented on my coding style a couple of times. My manager is also a fan of cleaner coding than is the norm. Is it my place to try to push for better style and better defensive coding, or should I simply code in the best way I can, and hope that my example will help others see how cleaner, more robust code (as well as aggressive refactoring) will result in less debugging and change time?