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Leaders are your people paying the personal price of working for you.

I think the fish rots from the head.

I think the benefit is hoarding.

I believe that people join a company and leave because they don’t feel valued or seen as unique human beings.

I believe that cultural change must start from the top.

Spend time in any workplace like I do as an architect of company culture and you’ll start to see some patterns emerge. Patterns such as hidden codes, unspoken ground rules, and cultural resistance. These patterns, while small on their own, create a cultural legacy that can see entire departments and companies decline over time. Ignore them and die!

I get it. As a leader, manager, supervisor, or human resources specialist, your job is to create a high-performance culture that’s also a great place to work.

You’ve done all the employee engagement surveys, you’ve had toolbox talks, you’ve sent people on trainings and retreats, you’ve hired coaches, you’ve implemented team software, and you’ve given out bonuses and rewards, but your culture still doesn’t work. it’s not that attractive. What’s with that?

What if I told you that hidden codes, unspoken ground rules, and cultural obstacles, unless addressed, would kill your chances of building a rock star culture? It is true. Tea drainers like politics and backstabbing, drama addiction, staff turnover, and lack of procedures all come from the same source, and I hate to break it to you. It’s probably you!

You’ll see that you can’t really change your workplace culture and build a high-performing team until you shift the focus from enriching the owner and company to enriching the lives of your people.

If this is not your current modus operandi, then I can guarantee you that now or later your humans will pay a very personal price. your separation, presenteeism, being late for work, being late for meetings, lack of responsibility is a psychosomatic behavior. Here is a bigger problem.

To change your culture, and change it for the better, you as a CEO, owner, manager, or leader must be willing to be vulnerable, to have raw, real conversations, and to get help from the outside.

in the end you have to #startwithU.

With your open mind, generous heart, and the help of others, you can make managing people an engine for growth instead of a hindrance.

In my experience and in all culture change, brand enhancement and leadership development programs I have seen that without full buy-in from the top (and I mean all the players and yes that includes you the CEO too) , all attempts to change will be hampered. , held back and hindered. Culture and tone are set at the top and then accepted or rejected by individual humans within the organization.

Leadership is not about managing widgets and reading the bottom line, it’s about personal growth, your growth. Great leadership and empowerment start with an open mind and heart. First you have to discover your unique power and use it and then you have to discover the unique power of your employees as well.

What is Take Away?

Take a look at your culture: do your fish heads stink? Are you suffering from too many M&M’s (managers and meetings)? Are you treating people like human resources instead of just humans?

What experiences of cultures, the good, bad and ugly have you had? Have you seen any culture change program try and fail? If so, what contributed to the failure? I’d love to know – share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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