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Comparing Corporate Culture to Homelessness January 12, 2010

Posted by Kevin Burns in attitude, attitude expert, attitude speaker, attitude strategist, corporate attitude expert, corporate culture, culture, greatness, kevin burns, keynote speaker.
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How is it possible to fix a corporate culture that is good for employees, clients, customers and shareholders? Why would you fix something that doesn’t need fixing – not improving – fixing. You wouldn’t fix a culture that is working and giving you the results you want would you? You wouldn’t feel the need to fix a culture where employees are productive, happy, service oriented and a culture that attracts the best talent and more customers. In fact, you would encourage more of the same to get more of the same. You would build on what you have to go up to the next level. You would move forward – not backward.

A culture that works is the result of a strategy that works. Culture is not the strategy. Culture is the result of strategy.

So if your culture sucks, don’t blame the culture – blame the strategy that gets you the culture. Remember, culture is not the strategy. Culture is the result of the strategy.

Let me illustrate: homelessness is not the problem – it is a result of the problem. People end up homeless through a long-term series of choices and circumstances. You see, no one can have everything going for them on Monday and suddenly wake up homeless on Wednesday. In the same way, you don’t have a productive and happy workplace on Monday and suddenly a culture that sucks on Wednesday. Nothing happens overnight.

Can you fix homelessness overnight? Sure. Rent each homeless person an apartment. Problem solved – for now. But over time, many of those same people will end up homeless again because homelessness isn’t the problem, it is the result of choices. If you don’t address the choices they are likely to repeat. Change the choices and you change the results.

Culture works the same way too. Culture doesn’t magically shift overnight. You can fire your entire staff and start over and your culture would no longer suck – for a while. But unless you address the long-term processes, policies, management and attitudes, you will end up with the same sucky culture before long.

In the same way you have sales targets, every organization needs to have culture targets if they want to attract the best talent, retain their good people, lower turnover, raise morale and increase customer spending and numbers of loyal customers. None of it happens by accident. Ignore your culture and it will end up sucking over time. Pay attention to what you want to go right.

If the turnover rates of employees and customers is high, your culture sucks because the underlying attitudes in your workplace suck. Culture never improves by ignoring the contributing factors. Morale never improves because you demand it. It changes because you address the contributing factors.

A culture of greatness is the result of a strategy of greatness. If you don’t develop a strategy of greatness then you will, at best, end up as just another mediocre organization whose people could care less about their work and their results. The choice is yours.


Attitude w/ ATTITUDE by Kevin Burns – Corporate Attitude/Culture Strategist

Creator of the 90-Day Strategy To Greatness Culture

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