Almost every CEO can tell you that corporate culture is important. Some might even be able to quote Drucker (“Culture eats strategy for breakfast.”). A few might be able to tell you what their corporate culture is, and with even fewer you’ll find their description is shared by managers and staff when asked anonymously. Almost none can tell you what culture is. Only an elite few can tell you how to manage, shape and change culture, systematically and reliably.
Nearly 20 years ago I published what was thought to be the first ever model of corporate alignment (the Corporate Alignment Model) in “Awesome Purpose.” Today even though more CEOs are equipped to align or manage their culture, rarely does a week go by when there is not another business disaster that can be directly or indirectly attributed to that lack of knowledge. Yes, when the failure becomes public, it looks as though the company ran out of money, or lost touch with its customers, but those are the last and most visible symptoms in a long line of causal events – all of which started with a lack of knowledge about how to lead and manage culture.
Learning how to lead and manage cultures is a tiny investment compared to two financial factors: the cost of not being able to do it (massive), the ROI from doing it (even more massive in the long-term).
In terms of people’s perception, culture is like education: we all have experience of it, and accordingly we all think we understand how to manage it. That illusion persists in the face of the ever mounting evidence to the contrary. Why?
For a host of reasons. Here is one, which you may have observed first hand.
Strategy is easy. Set a goal, choose a method. Done.
Culture, is “easy,” too, decide on a culture, announce the new culture. Done.
Ehmmm… No. Not even begun!
You’ve also seen the inevitable chaos that follows. Inevitable because, in most cases there is no shared understanding of what strategy or culture mean. And in the absence of shared understanding what chance is there of meaningful, effective action? Feel free to use negative integers to express your answer! Compare that to what could and should be: leaders who understand culture, what it is, how it is formed, how to manage it, leading the company smoothly into a new cultural reality. That, you have never seen, or if you have, it was as rare as hen’s teeth.
To help CEOs and other leaders with responsibility for corporate culture PsyPerform is pleased to announce its latest publication: an audio version of “The Perfect Culture: The Art of Culture Management.”
As readers may know, the cutting-edge tools that PsyPerform creates are only available to clients, to give clients a competitive advantage in the market place.
If you want to manage your corporate culture to get superior results contact PsyPerform here.