A 10-Year-Old Is Most Likely To Describe Himself By Saying Instantly Uncover Your Corporate Culture

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Instantly Uncover Your Corporate Culture

The Best Definition of “Corporate Culture”

If you asked 10 people to define “organizational culture,” you’d get 11 different answers!

Fortunately, based on my consulting and writing on leadership and organizational change, I created my definition of organizational culture:

“Company culture is the way every employee knows she or he has to take action — even when no one is watching.”

Understanding your company’s culture proves to be crucial for a number of reasons, including:

+ Organizational change will only be successful if it fits your company culture.

Changes that do not fit the culture will fail and not achieve the desired results.

+ Hire people who fit your culture. That is, “Don’t try to fit square pegs into round holes!”

The fastest way to discover organizational culture

Based on my consulting experience, I devised a super-quick way to uncover an organization’s culture: discover stories that all employees know and tell other employees. In fact, hearing the company’s signature story is a right of passage for new hires. Hearing stories implicitly informs new hires of the expected behaviors and values ​​of the organization.

Here are two examples, taken from my book, Absolutely Fabulous Organizational Change(TM): Strategies for Success from America’s Best-Run Companies.

First Story: The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company

Leonardo Inghilleri, senior vice president of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, told me that this story is often repeated among his company’s employees.

“Ladies and gentlemen serving ladies and gentlemen”

At the age of 14, Horst Schulze — now president of The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company — worked as an apprentice waiter in a very fine restaurant in his native Germany. Initially, he saw himself as a “servant”.

He then realized that the staff at this fine dining restaurant were highly skilled professionals. For example, he showed awe when he repeatedly saw head waiters chatting and serving diners. In fact, the head waiter speaks multiple languages. Therefore, he speaks German to German diners, French to French guests and English to British customers. He also expertly assists diners in their food and wine choices.

From this experience, Horst Schulze understood that a luxury hotel is made of ladies and gentlemen for ladies and gentlemen. He instilled that insight into the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, of which he is now president.

The Ritz-Carlton Culture

The experience of company president Horst Schulze inspired The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company’s customer care motto, which accurately expresses its corporate culture: “We Are Ladies and Gentlemen Serving Ladies and Gentlemen.” Note: The company culture fits perfectly with Ritz-Carlton’s grand, exciting and compelling vision: “Our main goal is to be the world’s leading provider of luxury travel and hospitality products and services.”

Second Story: Intuition

Brooks Fisher, vice president and general manager of Intuit’s consumer Internet business, told me the iconic Intuit story as follows:

“go home with me”

Intuit founder Scott Cook was so focused on understanding and meeting customer needs that he invented Follow me home. He goes to a store that sells Intuit software. Then, when the customer buys the Intuit software, he asks if he can follow the customer home. At home, he observes how customers install and use software.

Intuit’s Culture

Given Intuit’s story, what is the company’s culture or main focus? Fisher said the story conveys Intuit’s culture, which says “the customer always comes first.” And, as Fisher says, “That’s how you win.” Note: This story also happens to dovetail with Intuit’s big, compelling vision: “Our main goal is to revolutionize the way people do their finances.” .”

Hire applicants who “fit” your company culture

You know “fitting a square peg into a round hole” is hard. Likewise, companies need to hire applicants who “fit” into their organizational culture.

For example, one company I consulted with was super customer service oriented and had super friendly employees. When we benchmarked this company using the Abilities & Behavior Forecaster(TM) test—the Forecaster(TM) test is customized to help hire the best talent—we found that successful employees for each job scored on both scales of the test very high:

+ Helps people to be motivated, i.e. customer service oriented

+ friendly

This customer service-focused, super-friendly employee “fits” into the company’s culture and is proven to be the most likely to succeed.

Message = When you’re hiring the best talent, don’t bet on your organizational culture.Fortunately, you can do this by

1. Benchmark “superstar” employees in every job – have them fill out a validated pre-employment test to discover their “benchmark” test scores

2. Focus on recruiting candidates whose test scores are similar to those of your company’s “superstar” employees

Now you can understand your organization’s culture

To discover your company culture, you only have to uncover its story

1. Employees hear and repeat to new employees during their first week on the job

2. Perfectly communicates how all employees must act – even when no one is watching!

Usually, the story is about the founder of the company. It usually conveys insights and actions that lead to significant, profitable success.

© Copyright 2005 Michael Mercer, Ph.D., http://www.DrMercer.com

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