If you’re in business, you’ve undoubtedly come upon an article recently that talks about the importance of culture. If you’re small, you might think it doesn’t apply to you. If you’re big, you might think you already “do” culture. No matter what your size, you might agree that culture is a nice concept, but today you have to worry about sales.
So, let’s table culture for a moment and address your immediate concern, sales. You might have a weekly motivation meeting, or maybe the sales team attended a webcast, or even an off-site team-building event. Everyone was pumped. High fives all around. But that wore off fast. Some short-term attention was paid, but then it was back to business as usual. The way to make business as usual competitive in an everlasting way is via culture.
- Culture determines how your workplace feels. Customers experience this feeling too.
- Culture determines what lines people will cross. Customers experience the results of this too.
- Culture does, or does not, create the climate for innovation and creativity. This impacts the bottom line too.
The single most important thing about culture, however, is it never wears off. It doesn’t go away. It’s there every day, and it has a huge impact on everything that matters to every business. It’s your most unique competitive advantage!
Every business has a culture, even if they don’t know what it is, or nurture and promote it. You can’t set out to be what you’re not, or pretend to be what you’d like. People see through that in a heartbeat. No one can come in and “give” you a culture. It’s there. What you can do is find out what the cultural markings are. I help uncover and articulate snapshots of your presentculture using insights of employees.If things appear that concern you, you can work to change them. If you like what is there, keep doing what you’re doing and use the traits and actions with confidence.
The first step though, is appreciating just how tangibly important a corporate culture is. Look at any business right now that’s dominating their space. What’s unique about them? I bet it’s their culture.