Organization culture is as important as organizational strategy. But the two are ineffective unless they are inextricably intertwined with each other.
A recent HR Review article on “Demystifying Corporate Culture” made this quite clear:
“Having a highly engaged workforce is not enough, however. It is equally important that organisational culture and strategy are aligned. A workforce that is pulling in the wrong direction—one that operates with enthusiasm but contrary to strategic intent—is detrimental to performance. A workforce that operates with enthusiasm and pulls in the right direction delivers improved performance and makes a significant impact on an organisation’s ability to achieve its strategic goals.
“Indeed, getting the right mix of strategy and culture creates a formula for business success. Pursuing a strategy of innovation in a dynamic market can only succeed within an inquisitive culture where the workforce pushes boundaries and management encourages new ideas and constructive risk-taking.”
Helping companies to proactively manage their company culture based on their core values and strategic objectives is what I do every day. It’s what my book Winning with a Culture of Recognition, co-authored with Globoforce CEO Eric Mosley, is all about.
Managing culture is only possible, however, if employees so deeply understand the values and objectives that it becomes possible for them to live them out in their daily work. How do you do that? As I discussed earlier this week, specific and detailed recognition of employees every time they demonstrate one of those values.
How does that make it possible to manage culture? A strategic recognition program encourages frequent and timely recognition by all employees of their peers and colleagues any time they demonstrate these behaviors and help achieve the strategic objectives. With each of these values-based recognition moments recorded and charted, company leaders can see at a glance where, perhaps, there may be less recognition on “innovation” than they would like. If this is happening in the R&D department, obviously immediate intervention is necessary. But if “innovation” recognition is low in the accounting department, that’s likely a good thing!
Is your culture intertwined with your strategy or do they stand alone? Which approach do you think is more effective?