The culture of change
Culture can feel like an ethereal thing - however, you definitely know if you're working inside a bad one.
But how do you assess where you are now? How do you plan to change? Won't the culture have moved on anyway by the time you make change stick?
Here are some of my tips for thinking about culture when you're preparing a plan to engage people through change:
Be a bit David Attenborough. To work out 'what it's like around here' you need to observe people in their natural habitat. Not suggesting you hide behind the plants, but do make sure your data and info are based on what it's really like on the ground.
Check the culture drivers. Plan your detective work around the four main areas that can positively or negatively affect culture - purpose, leadership, employees and environment & systems.
Go back in time. Don't just look at the culture drivers today. If people have been around for a while find out what's happened. Even writing out this story can be very helpful to explain why you've chosen your strategy and tactics.
Weigh it up. Your research will tell you some things weigh more than others - even if they might not seem to at first glance. Plan tactics that meet the weight of the real problem. At Genie, we use a culture drivers assessment to see where the issues lie.
Involve people. The fastest way to land change is to involve the people who'll be affected by it. Don't just give them the finished article and expect them to learn it. Ask them to describe it in their own way. Find out what they think. Ask them to make it better.
Spend some time finding out what the culture reality is. It will pay dividends when you're planning your story, channels, and approach to engaging people through change.
How we can help
Our experience of delivering culture change ranges from businesses going through fierce transformation and turnaround to companies experiencing steep growth. We can quickly review where you are now and what it will take to affect lasting change.