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Chapter Two: Developing and Managing Company Culture?

Updated: Oct 27



Company’s culture? “Net collection of consistent behaviour over time”

Chapter Two at a “Glance”? [One Minute Byte]

1. Communication is the lifeblood of a company’s culture.

2. Can you create a culture that is robust enough to endure the constant change.

3. Individualism and Core Values, and sustainable success driving behaviours.

4. T.I.P.S. and the Innovative Culture.

5. Measuring to be able to manage the Innovative Culture.

The Main Points: What are the contributing factors. (Defining the problem)

Understanding the Key Points in the Situation? [Five Minute Bytes]

Communication is the lifeblood of a company’s culture.

  • A first shot at defining a Company Culture? “The net collection of Behaviour.”

  • It is what people continue to say & do, which creates the “Company Culture”.

  • The various forms of communication - formal and informal create the culture. Communication is the lifeblood of a company’s culture.

Can you create a culture that is robust enough to endure constant change?

  • How do you create a culture, then how do you manage the culture.

  • What is the culture aimed at achieving?

  • What about sub-cultures?

Individualism and Core Values, and success driving behaviours.

  • What are Core Values and how can we tell what a person’s values are?

  • A person’s behaviour makes their values visible how do we manage them?

  • Is a “Unified Culture” a fact or fiction?


T.I.P.S. and the Innovative Culture.

  • An Innovative Culture can only exist if it takes into consideration all types.

  • T.I.P.S. takes into consideration all the players in an organisation.

  • Understanding your preferred behaviours is step one to fuller contribution.

Measuring to be able to manage the Innovative Culture.

  • How do we know if something is innovative?

  • How to measure an Innovative Culture?

  • Not everyone needs to be innovative?

Moving to a shared understanding of the situation? [Fifteen Minute Bytes]

When two people share an idea and both gain a shared understanding of what

the other person is explaining, not only regarding the facts of the situation but

also how they feel about it. This is an example of similar frames of reference.

Communication is the lifeblood of a company’s culture.

Define a Company Culture? “The net collection of Behaviour.”

High-performance teams are not a group of people who think and act the same.

However, they do have a variety of personalities, viewpoints and abilities amongst

the members of the team. They are open to share ideas and take on other

people’s opinions. Creating this culture is based on the individual team member’s

self-confidence, openness to hear other people’s opinions and the drive to adopt

what might work. The communication which drives this is an example of

collaborative communication, we will elaborate on this in another section.


It is what people say and do, which creates the “Company Culture”

Your observable behaviours are the things that you say and do on a regular basis.

Company culture is therefore the net collection of ongoing behaviour within the

company. And what is it that influences your behaviour? It is your beliefs or

values that decide how you will respond in certain situations. If you have grown

up in a family and community where people show respect for older people, and

you see an older person struggling to carry a parcel, you most likely will go and

offer your assistance. Your values encouraged you to behave in a certain way to a

certain degree.


The various forms of communication - formal and informal create the culture.

What are the formal and informal ways of communicating? Informal

communication is distinctive and recognisable, and so is formal communication

also distinctive and recognisable. To friends who have known one another since

childhood talking about something they both are interested in will be relaxed,

informative and possible using informal terms. People communicating in a Court

of Law will be formal, governed by protocol and not relaxed. We will elaborate on

this in another section. In most businesses, there is the full range from informal to

semi-formal to formal. Most companies have acknowledged the formal side of

communication because it lends itself to the retention of facts. Informal

communication lends itself to experimentation and creativity. More on this later.

Can you create a culture that is robust enough to endure constant change?

How do you create a culture, then how do you manage that culture.

The creation and management of culture are firstly dependent on the principle of

stability. Without stability, nothing can be maintained. Where there is stability

then adaptability can be introduced. Think of a tree exposed to the elements. The

stability is the root formation ensuring that the tree is strong and will not blow

over in the winter storms. But being too stable (inflexible) can cause the tree to

snap at its base in very strong winds. This introduces the concept of adaptability,

where the tree will bend slightly in strong winds. Also, deciduous trees lose their

leaves in winter thus adapting to the strong winter storms. Creating & managing a

culture, companies need stability & adaptability. More on this later.


What is the culture aimed at achieving?

Core Values are just that. They are the values that unite the essential behaviours

to create that aura that surrounds the company and attracts talented people. If a

company culture is the net collection of behaviour, then there needs to be a core

of behaviours that makes collaboration and co-operation visible and obvious –

the look and feel of an organisation. Appropriate behaviours in the various

divisions within the company will drive performance in those areas.

Behaviours drive performance, so companies learn to identify those behaviours

which drive sustainable success in various parts of the company. Core Values and

key success driving behaviours are essential in performance management.


What about sub-cultures?

The values in Sales will differ slightly from the values in Accounts. Salespeople are

more extroverted and gregarious. Accountants are more likely to be introverted.

Salespeople are bigger picture, whereas Accountants are more likely to be more

detail-oriented. However, they need to share the common ground of the

important values of trust and honesty. For this reason, there are sub-cultures

within an organisation with slightly different sub-values. For example, the

accounts department might have accuracy as behaviour and the sales

department would have understanding the customers wants and needs as their

values, which would be different to the accounts department.


Individualism and Core Values, and driving behaviours.

What are Core Values and how can we tell what a person’s values are?

Personal values are a person’s beliefs, and therefore how much individualism

should be allowed within an organisation. If the core values and the sub-values

are used when a person is selected for a promotion or recruited into the

company, then a predominance of these values and behaviours need to not only

be recognised in the selection process but also developed in the performance

appraisal leading to confirmed behaviours driving success in their development.


A person’s behaviour makes their values visible how do we manage them?

A person’s beliefs will make them successful in certain kinds of work because their

behaviour will need to drive sustainable success in the performance appraisal,

leading to personal development against their targets. Using the performance

management process, and specifically the performance appraisal, an employee

can be developed to drive their success through a focus on short term targets

leading to the longer-term achievement of O.K.R.’s. It’s behaviour that drives

sustainable performance.


Is a “Unified Culture” a fact or fiction?

If the definition of a unified culture is where everyone has very similar beliefs and

therefore the majority of people will behave in similar ways, then a unified

culture is more fiction than fact. If culture is based on the net collection of

behaviours, then all it takes is for an individual to have a majority of their values

associated with core values. To expect everyone to have all the core values

aligned with their values would most likely lead to robotic behaviour, which is the

antithesis of a unified culture. Unified in their focus on the goals of the company.

T.I.P.S. and the Innovative Culture.

An Innovative Culture can only exist if it takes into consideration all types.

TIPS is an acronym for Theories, Ideas, People, Systems. The TIPS assessment

helps place each individual into one of seventeen possible positions on the chart.

The reason why there needs to be spread of preferred behaviours is to ensure

that the sub-cultures will have not only have the right fit in terms of the core

values, but also the sub-values needed in the sub-culture. The example given

earlier is the difference in the need for various success driving behaviours in

accounts and sales.

T.I.P.S. takes into consideration all the players in an organisation.

This makes TIPS unique in helping create an Innovative Culture. There needs to

be those that create and those that support the creative ideas and make them

happen. This idea of diversity in all working teams. For one good reason, if all the

members of a team are personality clones, then it is either a fight for superiority

or it worse still, groupthink, where any harebrained idea is agreed up, usually

leading to disaster.


Understanding your preferred behaviours is step one to fuller contribution.

Once you have an understanding of where you fit in, you can then begin to

explore to see if your profile is correct. Knowing your preferred behaviour is

step one. Being able to actually prove that it is effective in action, is step two.

Step three is being able to identify your preferred backup behaviour, which is the

behaviour that you will fall back on when your preferred behaviour does not bring

the results you are looking for.

Measuring to be able to manage the Innovative Culture.

How do we know if something is innovative?

Well step one, has it changed. Change is not necessarily innovative, but if the

change is positive, then that’s the first step. So change is not necessarily

innovative, but development is.


How to measure an Innovative Culture?

Measuring a culture requires that you look at the outputs of the team. If there is

a constant flow of developmental products or services that come out of the team,

then the chances are there is an Innovative culture at play. Key aspects that a

manager must look for in the team is the level of involvement that each team

member demonstrates in one on one and in many meetings. How much

self-development have they undertaken and how much


Not everyone needs to be innovative?

True.

Developing and managing a company culture and the aura that surrounds the company