Discover the seven signs of a good leader, why you need to implement an effective whistleblowing policy, how HR can foster innovative thinking, and much more in our latest Culture Change blog...
On Friday 5 August, over 3 billion people around the world had their eyes locked on Rio de Janeiro to watch the Olympics Opening Ceremony. There is no doubt about it - it was a beautiful spectacle. Headlines throughout the world the following day congratulated Brazil for a truly amazing show. As the Washington Post said, “Rio was basking in what it does best. This is a country expert in revelry, which every years fills its streets with dancing, stranger-kissing, inebriated glee at Carnival.”
I recently had coffee with a close friend who’s just resigned from a senior position in a key department of a large company. Answering the puzzled look on my face, he explained that he’d had enough of his boss – the manager of a specific department who took the role a year earlier.
I can talk at a theoretical level about a culture of accountability.
Or I can give you a small practical example from a conversation I had recently with a team leader in a retail organisation. It is the small changes in leadership behavior that send the messages that expectations are really changing. These, added together, start to change the culture.
It saddens me to hear what is happening to Toyota right now.
They have been such a strongly values driven company, and it seems they became focused on growth and did not see the scale of the quality problem. And what a cost they are paying now. How can they even calculate the damage to their brand, their sales, the consumer"s trust in their cars? Consumers will be scared that their accelerator pedal may jam down, causing their car to speed up uncontrollably and result in some of the horrific accidents now described in the media. Compare what is happening now to Toyota to the legendary recall of their product Tylenol, which cemented their reputation with consumers and employees as being a company who truly lived by their "Credo"
Growth or values? What happens when they appear to be in conflict? What do values really mean in the corporate context? There can appear to be many shades of gray. Most people belief they are doing the right thing, or persuade themselves that this is the case. It takes a level of self awareness to be willing to question ones own actions, and a culture which welcomes constructive challenge to question those of others. Here are five questions to ask in relation to values, and the extent to which you are prepared to be values driven in your approach to decisions. They can form the basis of a whole workshop. In the strongest cultures they are always in people"s minds.