What is culture?
How do you effectively institute, develop and maintain culture? How do you instill respect and honour for leadership in an environment where it isn’t a value?
And in that, how do you ensure that the leadership isn’t seen by the people as arrogant and in demand of honour and respect, and at the same time how do you ensure the leadership don’t become arrogant and forget that servant leadership is the number one heart attitude to have as a leader?
These are just a few of the questions being asked around culture, so here is some thought leadership to stimulate ideas and conversations within your teams!
Culture is the DNA that permeates everything you do…it’s a way of doing things, the sense of value that people feel, it is the heart behind your intent. Culture exists if we like it or not, and the thing is if we don’t develop it, it develops us!
Culture needs to be taught on arrival into the environment but culture is more than taught – culture is caught! It’s both tangible and intangible, the person who controls values controls the culture and he will rule the house.
Warning – those whose voice is being heard because it’s the loudest can also be that voice that’s setting the culture.
So make sure what that voice is saying, is saying it right and in the right way! And in an absence of effective leadership, it could be a case of “monkey see monkey do”…what you allow happens…is there an absence of effective leadership, there may just be a subculture that does not serve the vision as a result…
Leaders need to make deliberate effort to develop culture! Develop a culture of service! Ownership also breeds culture, so move your team from having a job mind-set to having an owner mind-set. How do you do that? It starts with you – stop having a boss mind-set and start having a Leader mind-set! It’s a balance between what we do and why we do it, the what is what we do, and the why is the value behind it…it’s the what-why seesaw.
It’s easier to determine a culture that doesn’t exist vs a culture that does, so develop one in your leadership and team as soon as possible and always understand the reason for the culture you want. The culture you want should tie into your vision. The participants in your team or organisation should be able to buy into the vision and culture as well as contribute and defend the culture through words and action! Culture needs to become a lifestyle.
Respecting authority is an attitude…it’s a value thing – that is culture. Leaders need to put people first so that respect happens naturally. People matter…start honouring and respecting the staff and then you’ll be honoured.
Give the leadership of your organisation credibility so people buy into them. Position the leaders in the right sense…it’s not about getting credit it’s about adding value. So choose your values well, have a strong vision and lead effectively and serve, because culture grows if you like it or not. So make sure you cultivate it the right way, be very deliberate with your culture words and always teach and illustrate the culture you are wanting to develop.
So if you want to know who you are, then take a good look at those around you, take a good look at your leaders, take a good look at your peers, take a good look at your team, and then take a good look at your clients.
You see, they are a reflection of you – and you attract who you are! Be the leader who cultivates the right culture…the right environment for growth. Culture is not just found in dairy, so make sure that you don’t cry over spilt milk when you have the opportunity to develop culture from the start!