3 Considerations for Building a High Performing Culture

Picture of a team rowing a crew shell in perfect form Building a High Performing Culture

Building a High Performing Culture Matters
Building a high performing culture accounts for 40% of the difference between high and low growth companies.  With you or without you, an organizational culture will evolve. Wouldn’t you as leader want to have an influence over what emerges as the company’s behavioral norms and practices?

The Definition of Culture
A company’s culture represents the organization’s “way of life”… the behaviors and values that employees accept, often without thinking about them, and that, by imitation or communication, infuse the entire workforce.

Successful Leaders Shape the Workplace Culture
Successful leaders are very thoughtful and very intentional about how and in what direction they shape their high performing corporate culture. Create a culture that works and you will have engaged employees and high performance; create an environment and tone that does not work and you are unlikely to achieve your business goals.

Your job as a leader is to set the environment that gets everyone pulling in sync and in the same direction.

Three Considerations for Building a High Performing Culture
Here are some critical considerations as you go about the process of building a high performance culture that is aligned with your business strategy:

1. As Leader, You Play a Critical Role
As you go, so goes the “nation.” You can set the tone for the organizational culture you desire, but make sure it authentically fits you and your personality. If you are leading an entrepreneurial startup, you probably feel better in a hoodie than in a suit with a briefcase. By the same token, a big city legal firm would not seem credible unless rather formally dressed.

However, culture goes far beyond attire. Set the example for the behaviors and values you want to encourage…structured interoffice appointments or drop-in, freewheeling discussions; strict or flexible office hours; flat or hierarchical reporting arrangements. It is mostly up to you.

2. Question Which Physical Environment Will Foster The Culture You Seek
The layout of office space can have a huge impact on corporate culture. Offices with doors provide privacy for thinking uninterruptedly but can also create barriers to open communication. Lack of gathering spots can inhibit collaboration and the testing out of new ideas on coworkers.

Do break rooms and gym facilities encourage employees to work less or do they promote communication? This is the kind of question you should ask as you build your culture.

You can even test ideas to see how they impact building a high performing culture.

  • Phil Libin at Evernote, a provider of note-taking and archiving technology, actually removed telephones from workers’ office desks.
  • He reasoned that desk phones were unnecessary when cell phones and conference room phones were available; surprisingly nobody seemed to miss them.
  • He also provided bi-monthly housecleaning for employees; this quickly earned the appreciation and support of employees’ significant others.
  • A “take as much vacation as you want as long as your work is done” policy, however, required a bit of adjustment. Evernote’s dedicated workers were not taking much time off at all. Libin needed to add the enticement of $1,000 for those who would take a week at a time.

3. Hire For The Corporate Culture You Want
Every new person you hire should be screened for the culture in which they work best. Is their desired culture in alignment with yours? It better be or their tenure with you is likely to be short. Culture matters in the overall employee attraction, engagement and retention game…it matters a lot.

4. Choose Your “Rules” Carefully
Every organization needs some standards of behavior by which they operate and to which they hold leaders and employees accountable. Do you really intend to enforce and reward them? If so, make sure that each rule you create has a real purpose and makes sense within your high performing corporate culture and strategic vision.

Establishing hard and fast regulations around time off might be acceptable in some business cultures but would not fly in the entrepreneurial culture of Silicon Valley as exemplified by Google and other successful high-tech firms.

The Bottom Line
Building a high performing culture matters.  Culture is the glue that creates the Organizational Alignment and holds strategy and talent together. Think through what would be the most effective culture for your business strategy…one that feels authentic to you and that will attract, inspire and retain the employees you want both now and in the future.

Align the organizational culture with your style, your business, and your ideal employee profile and you will improve organizational performance.

To learn more about building a high performing culture, download The 3 Levels of Building a High Performing Culture

Comments are closed.

We recently partnered with LSA Global to offer our Supervisors and Managers a customized two-day management training program. Everyone who attended said it was by far the best management training program they had ever attended. The content was rich and highly interactive. The case studies were relevant. Each participant walked away from the training much better equipped to lead their teams.

Jeff Coon
Director of Human Resources

The LSA Global team was very receptive and flexible to our needs every step of the way. Their staff and facilitator demonstrated attention to detail, responsiveness, and professional courtesy. The participants were thrilled with the outcome and rated the communication skills workshop and the facilitator as ‘Excellent’. I’d highly recommend working with the LSA Global team to meet your professional development needs.

John Mastrorilli
FRDP Leader

Intuit

I have worked with other training companies and found it to be more of a seller/buyer relationship than one of matching the right expertise to our business issues. That’s what LSA does – ask the hard questions, listen, and understand our business needs. We receive the benefit of their expertise from assistance with personal development plans to enhancing team performance, to looking at enterprise-wide challenges. It’s all about helping our business succeed as we grow. Right now, LSA is providing great ideas, a fresh approach, and valuable guidance as we develop our management team and accelerate our client relationship management results.

Kristin Westland-Kaune
Director, Team Development

PalmSource has found our relationship with LSA extremely beneficial. We worked closely with LSA to customize the right Management Training Program solution to meet our unique business needs. LSA is a quality organization, one that I’d recommend to any company looking for a first class training and consulting partner.

Ken Boehm
Vice President of Human Resources

In the Next Generation Management Development courses, I was trained with skills and tools that have made me and my team more productive, motivated, and successful at communicating with other departments.

 

Kevin Ashman
Firmware Engineering Supervisor

We partnered with LSA Global to help us invest in our people in the areas of performance coaching, diversity, and inclusion. They focused on helping us succeed and were very flexible in meeting our specific needs. LSA Global exceeded my expectations from a speed, quality, and value standpoint. I would recommend LSA Global to anyone looking for a true business partner.

Anita Luckinbill
Director, Human Resources

LSA helped change our entire culture around meetings, making them more effective and efficient, thus enabling us to concentrate on driving more business.

Terry Wassman
VP of Human Resources

Hyperion has a commitment to lifelong learning. LSA helps us provide the right business sales training, management training programs, and leadership development programs at the right time to meet the needs of both individuals and departments. I especially appreciate their ability to listen to my needs and recommend the appropriate facilitators, solutions and content.

Sarah Parks
Senior Project Manager

Hyperion

LSA exceeded all my expectations. We interviewed 7 potential training and consulting partners and selected LSA due to their expertise, flexibility, and breadth and depth of solutions. We were able to construct a management training course from the modules most appropriate to our needs, and are able to provide additional training from their well developed portfolio of experts. Our managers galvanized as a team throughout the session and are better prepared for the rigors of a competitive market.

Mitch Mandich
CEO

Edify

LSA’s approach and ability to bring the best resources to eBay has been a great asset. They really focus on helping us succeed in any way they can and are very flexible in meeting our management and talent needs.

Mike Normant
Learning & Development

ebay

LSA is an instrumental training outsourcing partner in helping us to build management capacity and strategically invest in our people. Their flexibility, depth, and breadth of expertise allows us to deliver top quality solutions that are directly tied to key business plans. Their ability to custom design, deliver, and evaluate our Management Curriculum has been excellent. They are true business partners and a pleasure to work with.

Margaret M. Mader
Vice President, Human Resources

Hyperion

Understanding and conforming to legal compliance was very important to our company. We turned to LSA Global to provide a quality and cost effective way to ensure that we were AB 1825 compliant. Their interactive eLearning program was top-notch. It allowed our managers to learn at their own pace, and on their own time. The program was tailored to include our logo and our internal harassment policies. It was interactive and met all federal and state legal requirements. I would highly recommend LSA Global to any company looking for an efficient and effective and top quality way to train their managers to be in compliance.

Kelly Warren, SPHR
Director, HR & Compliance

We partnered with LSA to pilot a customized behavioral interviewing program to help ensure that we continue to hire the best and brightest as we continue to rapidly scale. LSA’s ability to understand our business and our unique culture combined with their desire to ensure that the best practices framework truly fits our performance environment and is highly adopted by our people is a real blessing. Most other firms want to just ‘give you training.’ Not LSA, they are focused on helping me hit our hiring forecasts and attract A players.

Jennifer Remling
Director of Global Recruiting

AKQA

LSA’s Employee Engagement Consulting and Survey work has provided critical visibility into: how well our people are holding up under the general economic environment, as well as, the specific challenges that face biotechnology companies in their efforts to discover and develop new medicines; their level of alignment and commitment to XOMA’s Vision and mission critical strategies; how leadership practices and management systems support an environment that engender commitment, and the specific actions that our leaders can take to improve on areas that are important to our people. I highly recommend LSA’s employee engagement solutions.

Chris Wells
Vice President, HR and IT

I have worked with LSA Global at previous companies and welcomed the opportunity to bring them in to support my new organization. We worked closely with LSA to design a solution for our Client Partner Teams and Management Training on both coasts. LSA designed a customized solution for our business and organizational culture. LSA is a quality organization, one that I’d recommend to any company looking for a first class training and consulting partner that makes an impact.

Laurie Torres
Chief People Officer

Evaluate your Performance

Toolkits

Toolkits

Download key published insights and tools from industry experts highlighting best practices in the areas of talent, strategy and culture.

More

Health Checks

Health Checks

Want to know how you stack up against leading organizations?  Receive a complimentary benchmarking analysis courtesy of an LSA Expert.

More

Whitepapers

Whitepapers

Get up to speed on timely solutions critical to your business. Published by LSA Experts based upon client feedback and key industry trends.

More

Methodology

Methodologies

First we identify the key metrics you want to improve. Then we assemble a dedicated team of elite experts who have successfully solved similar problems with similar clients.

More

Blogs

Stay up to do date with the latest information on how we help high growth companies align their culture and talent with strategy.

More

Case Studies

Client Case Studies

Real world consulting and training approaches from LSA projects, providing insights on how your company can outperform the competition.

More