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How Leaders Shape Company Culture

What does a strong company culture look like? When you think about Google, you think of bright, airy offices and ping pong rooms full of enthusiastic nerds and hipsters. (Well, that is what I imagine anyway.) But as Karina Fabian points out in an article for Business News Daily, a strong company culture does not necessarily entail a zany, “fun-loving” culture. It just needs to instill a unified identity and motivate employees, and ensuring such a culture exists sounds like a job for leaders.

Molded in Your Own Image

Now that I think about it, another way to look at culture might be as a companion or even an inverse to governance. Governance dictates how to go about business on “hard” topics, laying out processes. Culture meanwhile describes how the business is already operating with regard to “soft” topics, like how people communicate and what values are driving business. We have absolute control over establishing governance, but we can only intimate what we would like to see with culture.

Fabian describes these steps for how leaders might push culture in the right direction:

The first step for any leader looking to improve the workplace culture is to determine the values that reflect the company. …

Once you have determined the core values that define your organization, you need to determine what concrete behaviors reflect those values. These too vary by organization. For example, a retailer with the value of “doing more for the customer” might have employees offer to help carry bags to the customer’s car, while a mechanic shop with the same value might have free detailing with every repair.

She continues to note that respect, trust, and transparency are important hallmarks of any successful organization. But whatever things there are that leaders want to see in their organizations, leaders must become the example for those behaviors. If you want your teams to trust each other (and you), then you must trust your teams. If you want people to respect each other’s perspectives, then be empathetic when people come to you with problems.

It could be that company culture is ultimately just a reflection of leadership’s personalities.

You can view the original article here: http://www.businessnewsdaily.com/9917-leaders-company-culture.html

About John Friscia

John Friscia is the Editor of Computer Aid’s Accelerating IT Success. He began working for Computer Aid, Inc. in 2013 and continues to provide graphic design support for AITS. He graduated summa cum laude from Shippensburg University with a B.A. in English.

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