I thought it was an easier task than I initially imagined. It has been too long since I last wrote. I have a good reason though, I was igniting a startup.
Just before I started my most recent journey, I have attended a year long leadership program. In one of the workshops, I have been asked to go on a limb, take a risk and develop an emotionally charging personal leadership statement. A statement that represents my deepest, most rooted believes - “I am the mystic force that unleashes the best in people to achieve things they never thought possible” – I made that statement my new career.
Culture is the heart and soul of any business and my personal passion. Deeply rooted in turnaround management, performance improvement and ultimately manifested in bringing the full potential of teams.
Whether written, preached or simply understood, culture describes the ways an organization collective population think, feel and act.
Culture might be easily identified but very hard to elaborate on – it is the source of all behaviors and decisions we make, yet very difficult to pin down – it is like a faith, intangible, yet ever powerful.
Similar to relationships, companies cycles through phases; the excitement of startup, the energy of the early followers and the gratification of acceleration and progress - scoring and making impact.
Companies equally go through stagnation, complacency and fatigue. Their people develop entitlements and become alienated from their original purpose. They lose their core values, the sparkle in their eyes, the charge of youth, and they ultimately lose their drive.
Those new developed norms and entitlements do not only alienate the followers from the core; they stagnate growth, build informal social environment and unstructured relationships that overtake accountability. Whom you know becomes more important than what you know.
I characterize my own leadership largely as a chief drummer, a beat setter – the high priest and the guardian of our culture and values.
The more intense, thrilling and brassy the drum rolls are, the more acute and storming the beat is and the more inspiring, passionate and aspiring the preaching is – the more committed, devoted and engaged the teams are. Exceptional results and high-performance become a mere outcome of that brilliance.
Culture is the ultimate responsibility of the leadership and the soul of the organization. People identity with and subscribe to an organization based on its culture.
Like a sport fan club. Fans become fanatical and uncompromising; they zealously paint their faces, wildly cheer at the top of their lungs and go to extended lengths to passionately support their teams. So does the true believers in businesses.
Whenever there is a change (in strategy, tactic, management or leadership style) found in conflict with culture – Culture always win.
Those who seek mere outcomes, they rarely get it – if they do, it is almost never sustainable. The hard work is rooted deep in the culture – the invisible power that inspires us, make us go beyond – make us paint our faces!