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Friday, March 15, 2013
The Measure: Post #9- Culture
About Culture: Edgar Schein (MIT’s leading culture emeritus scholar) talks about culture as a way of working together in such a way as it breeds success and becomes a way of doing things for new people who enter the culture. Christensen says, “A culture is the unique combination of process and priorities within an organization.” Strong, positive cultures can help companies become self managing. Whether it’s Pixar, Amazon, or Netflix, strong cultures help self regulate such innovative practices as Netflix’s vacation policy—take as much as you need as long you’re doing a great job at work. You can imagine how coworkers would let you know if you began to abuse this policy. Culture in families works the same way by developing actions that support this assertion: “This is the way our family behaves.” For example, we might assert: We are a kind, generous, and loving family. This assertion, if supported by our actions, begins to grow a culture of kindness, generosity and love. So, one day when your grown children act according to this mantra, don’t be surprised! But, enforcing rules to teach culture is often harder on the parent than the child. The author suggests creating a family motto to reinforce culture. Also, he notes, “It’s not about controlling bad behavior; it’s about celebrating the good. Allowing your children to get away with lazy or disrespectful behavior a few times will begin the process of making it your family’s culture—one you may not like.” (p.172-174)