Undeniably, most companies have a culture. The culture is defined as ” the behaviors and actions that individuals use to decipher what is acceptable practice”. In most companies, the culture exists as a collection of practices established by an inner group–be they top executives or favored employees–an eclectic accumluation of values and behaviors evolved over time.
Contrast that to a purposeful culture, one in which specific values are communicated starting with the potential employees’ first interview, and are tied tightly to each and every operational practice of the company.
What type of culture do you have–a culture of default or one of purpose?
Here is the test. If you have a purposeful culture:
- Every employee repeat, unassisted, the values of the company
- You have a unique hiring practice that screens for values not just skills
- When you bring new employees onboard, you ensure they get an indoctrination of values from the very top of the organization along with job training
- you have ongoing training to reinforce values as a way of doing business
- Employees are recognized for values as well as productivity and performance
- Your company would release a top performer or a person with deep institutional knowledge if they violated the values
Companies with purposeful culture are easy to spot. They are so consistent in their culture that most outside observers can describe their values without seeing the wall plaque that lists them.
So the only question left is, why does it matter? Having a purposeful culture is the key ingredient in accomplishing high performance execution consistently. Look around at companies with consistent high performance and they likely have a purposeful culture: Chick-fil-a consistently wins the top awards for fast food restaurants and has a clear culture of Christian values; Southwest Airlines puts people first as exhibited by their “no bag fees” rule among others and is the top returning shareholder value company over the last 30 years in the US. Who can argue that Apple has a purposeful culture? Please share other examples of companies whose purposeful culture enables them to achieve high performance consistently. Once you take a look at the list, the rationale for having a purposeful culture doesn’t need further explanation!
Need help evolving your culture to a purposeful one? Contact us today!