The #1 Culture Killer
Knowing what ails your culture and brand is the first step in identifying a possible remedies. From my experience in working with more than 250 companies, one of the biggest threats to a healthy business is a culture of fear.
We all know the feeling. It’s when you are in an environment where you’re afraid to make mistakes, afraid to speak out, afraid to share the idea, afraid to challenge the thinking of others, afraid to hold others accountable, afraid to be ourselves.
A culture of fear is an outcome of an unexamined past as an imagined future.
When we don’t examine why things went the way they did—good, bad or otherwise—we don’t have the data-driven insight to understand why something worked or didn’t, and what to do about it today, and tomorrow.
Fear is a killer—of trust, of collaboration, of innovation.
Fear in your culture usually comes from conversations that didn’t happen about events that transpired which effected someone’s morale, engagement, commitment, and/or trust. When trust has diminished the ability to be collaborative, connective, creative, and confront what needs to be confronted is stifled. This also kills holding each other, and ourselves, accountable. All of this, of course, kills outcomes and results. Fear can also inhibit us from seeing what’s truly taking place in front of us. The cost of fear is immeasurable.
For brands, a culture of fear will effect how the outside world experiences you. Just like animals that can sense fear, your customers sniff it out, too. Fear in your customer service team can show up as defensiveness and lack of accountability. Fear in new product development can show up in your inhibitions to take innovative leaps. Fear in your marketing communication can up in tendencies to follow or over-react to what competitors are doing—instead of crafting and staying your strategic course.
All cultures need to be examined so the mistakes, missteps, misunderstandings and missed opportunities of the past don’t dictate your future.
The remedy to fear in a culture begins with understanding where it comes from. The antidote comes from addressing these issues head-on and doubling down on your beliefs, assuming you know them. From this stance, you can be armed with the wisdom to change, adapt and evolve, then dictate your own remarkable future.
Insight (aka the deep reflection that comes from data) also gives you the courage to evolve to your fullest potential as a team, as a brand, and as a business.
I help organizations build and implement custom remedies from a culture of fear and reclaim control of your future by employing culture bench-marking and values mining processes. It’s all part of your brand’s evolution.
If any of this makes sense to you, I’m here to talk and serve.
Steve can help you create an integrated belief-driven business that can reach and align with more of the right people —employees, customers, donors and investors—in a sustainable and meaningful way.