Walking the Talk Blog

Culture change: 4 secrets for setting the right cultural goals

[fa icon="calendar"] 17-Jun-2015 15:42:03 / by Carolyn Taylor

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1. Start with personal goals related to your own behaviour.

Focus on the one leadership behavior where the gap is greatest between your 'walk' and your 'talk' – the organisation's cultural aspirations or your own personal leadership vision. If you don't know what that behaviour is, make it your goal to find out, accept what you find, and to take action.

 

AWARENESS ----> ACCEPTANCE ----> ACTION

 

 
2. Measure culture in the smallest available chunks.

If you are measuring culture at the organisational level, ask for and provide data at the level of individual teams. Ask for and provide new data annually. Longer intervals between measurements make it difficult to stay personally focused on goal achievement. Smaller temperature checks between data points provide even better feedback to allow course correction if necessary. This allows you to set measurable goals with your team and makes culture change much more tangible.

 

3. Treat your culture change initiatives with the rigour of any other business project.

Deadlines, milestones, reporting. The rigour of holding yourself and others to account forces you to make culture tangible.

 

4. Share your goals.

Even the personal ones related to behaviour. Talking about your goals increases the stakes – there is an expectation that you will walk your talk. It also enrolls others in helping you. When I told people that I had a goal to become a better listener, I asked them to point out to me when they felt I wasn't listening. They then became my helpers rather than my critics.

 

What would you add to this list?

 

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Topics: Leadership, Behaviour, Leading culture

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