Reflections from Good to Great and Beyond Great, part 19
Corporate Culture – Creating the Place
When we speak about initiating corporate transformation, we are talking about processes to shift the culture of the organization. Culture has to do with the surrounding circumstances and environment in a place—those things that impact the behaviors and activities of people. To paraphrase Edgar Schein, Professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, corporate culture is the set of beliefs, values and actions shaped by the organization’s top executives.
These tend to be broadly shared by a corporation’s members.
They can be faithfully transmitted from generation to generation of employees.
James Autry authored a wonderful book and video entitled Love and Profit. In his book and presentation on the “art of caring leadership,” he often refers to the leaders’ role as “to create the place.” That is a beautiful way to look at the overall role of the leader—to create the place where people can come to do great work, to share in rewards, and to fulfill their hopes and dreams while experiencing a “job well done.”
The “place” Autry is referring to is much more than the building. It is the environment—the culture that surrounds everyone there. It influences their work and their lives.
President, Advanced Team Concepts