With Organizational Culture being the difference maker in success, removing blockages can accelerate growth
With all the talk about corporate culture today and how critically important it is to organizational health and success, and the ability to execute strategy flawlessly, we’d like to share the fatal mistakes often made to undermine a productive and collaborative culture. These mistakes can be characterized by four types of executions – Blinded by the Light; Sound of Silence; Right Time, Wrong Me; and the Spirit is Alive:
- Symptoms vs Cause – Too often, leaders and managers focus on negative symptoms when culture goes bad and ignore the specific cause. Culture is a complex formula comprising policies, manager behavior, leadership direction, promotional policies, etc. All of which conspire to form habits, behaviors, and relationships.
- No North Star – When there is no singular meaning, culture suffers. People operate to their own needs vs. the organization’s direction.
- Unenforced Policies – Similarly, unenforced policies with the workforce chip away at cultural norms and beliefs.
- Lack of Leadership Voice – Without a consistent, clear narrative internally, culture suffers as employees lack direction.
- Investment/Improvement – Culture is positively impacted by an organization’s investments to improve the business as employees view such decisions as confidence in the future and more opportunities personally.
- Interactive Freedom – The power to build connections, provide feedback, and speak one’s mind is the cornerstone of a healthy culture and tends to be overlooked.
- Organizational Spirit and Story – Represents the character inherent in organizational culture. Thriving cultures exude a passionate spirit borne out of the business strategy and told in narrative form.
The cultural touchstones that set the pace and direction of a company’s evolution must balance decision-making, oversight, collaboration, information sharing, and structural integrity. It is a delicate dance for sure but one that can be established and maintained through an never-ending search for organizational balance and health. Finding purpose and value in what you do is a key tenet of an effective culture.
It aligns business intent with customer experience and employee connection.
How can you measure an organization’s culture?
Very simply, by how people are recruited, developed and the level of knowledge and confidence that permeates the company. And then how that information is shared and cultivated among each other.
Culture can be both incredibly complex and amazingly simple. The key is removing those things that act as deterrents to operating in a seamless, productive manner.
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