Creating a Culture That Works

Do you think about the culture operating in your organization? Unless you’re employed in a human resource capacity, the answer is probably “no.”  In a new article entitled Creating a Culture That Works, senior consulting partners Chris Edmonds and Bob Glaser say that culture is usually poorly understood in most organizations even though it is a key factor that impacts employee satisfaction, engagement, and overall employee productivity. Considering the importance of a supportive and aligned culture, why is it under the radar for most senior executives?

  • Part of the reason is that culture is hard to define in most organizations. It operates in the background while other, easier-to-measure aspects of corporate performance—like goals and tasks, preoccupy leadership discussions.
  • Senior executives greatly underestimate the power of an organizational culture plus very few leaders have ever had any real experience in dealing with culture change.

For executives who know that their organization’s culture is not what it could be, Edmonds and Glaser recommend taking a three-step approach:

  1. Examine the existing culture—look at the underlying beliefs and assumptions that are influencing people’s existing behavior. Especially look at getting senior leaders to examine their own personal beliefs about getting things done in the organization.
  2. Define the desired behavior—don’t assume that everyone agrees what good behavior looks like.  Take the time to formally define values in behavioral terms. Gather input from employees and boil it down into clear, actionable items.
  3. Hold people accountable for living the stated values—once the values and behaviors have been identified and defined, the final step to creating a culture that works is holding people accountable

A strong, working culture helps to create satisfied employees who feel cared for, trusted, and respected, which increases engagement and ultimately leads to better productivity. To read the entire article, click here.

2 thoughts on “Creating a Culture That Works

  1. This sounds easier in theory than it will be to put in practice. Peoples attitudes at work will sometimes change in the short term, but to really affect a long term culture change takes a daily commitment by everyone involved in the company. But it all starts at the top!

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