Building a High Performing Culture Matters
Our organizational alignment research found that building a high performing culture accounts for 40% of the difference between high and low performing companies in terms of revenue growth, profitability, customer loyalty, and employee engagement. With you or without you, your 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” and “how work gets done” – 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 cultural norms. They create a culture that is healthy, high performing, and aligned with the achievement of key business goals. So, your job as a leader is to create the environment that gets everyone pulling in sync and in the same direction.
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:
Areas of consideration include centralized or decentralized decision making, internal or external customer focus, market leader or market adopter philosophy, or a transactional or intimate customer focus. As a leader, it is mostly up to you to ensure that your culture aligns with your strategy, your leadership team, your marketplace, and your people.
Do break rooms and gym facilities encourage employees to work less or do they promote comradery and communication? Does free food signal that employees are supposed to work long hours or is it a way to say thank you? These are 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, removed telephones from workers’ office desks, provided bi-monthly housecleaning for employees, and offered $1,000 toward vacations for employees who would take a week at a time. These tactics were all aligned with Evernote’s desired culture and talent management strategy.
Try to eliminate all policies that get in the way of the way that you want work to get done to best execute your business and people strategies.
The Bottom Line
Building a high performing culture can set you apart from the competition. Workplace culture is the glue that aligns your people with your strategy. Think through what would be the most effective culture for your business and people strategies. Then make it happen,
To learn more about building a high performing culture, download The 3 Levels of Building a High Performing Culture
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