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Values Drive Behaviors & Behaviors Drive Habits

You’re ‘being’ and ‘doing’ the right things your organization values or the wrong thing perfectly. In some cases competing values identifies the underlying dimensions of an organization’s culture that exist in almost all human and organizational activity. There are four critical dimensions that drive our habits and behaviors:

  • Community – the need for one another

  • Educate – a thirst to learn

  • Acquire – a desire to possess

  • Safety – the need to feel safe

These four dimensions are in alignment with the four culture archetypes present in workplaces around the world.

To Create a dynamic, entrepreneurial spirit culture
To Collaborate in a people-friendly community culture
To Control a process-oriented, discipline culture, and
To Compete in a results-driven culture.

The framework here is based on the work of Marcella Bremer and the research and application of author, practicioner and professor of leadership excellence at the University of Michigan, Kim Cameron. It’s likely you’ll recognize your business or organization’s ‘way of doing things’ in the examples below regardless of the setting or market you’re a part of.

Create Your Culture – An entrepreneurial spirit is a mindset – an attitude, an approach to actively seeking out change, rather than waiting to adapt to it. It embraces critical thinking, innovation and continuous improvement. An entrepreneurial spirit is a of feeling empowered, motivated, and capable of taking things into your own hands. Companies that nurture an entrepreneurial spirit encourage their employees to not only see problems and opportunities but to come up with critically creative methods and solutions that move their business forward.

Collaborate With Each Other – Moving beyond an entrepreneurial spirit is about building a team of people who aren’t afraid to be in the driver’s seat. They are equally happy to ride in the passenger’s seat when others take the lead, also. It’s built around collaboration; the concept of no idea is a bad idea. Teams want to be fulfilled in their jobs and accomplish great things with great people. More than that, employees want to contribute their ideas – so employers and employees work together to foster a culture that enables ideas to flow from anywhere within the company.

“a culture of discipline is not a principle of business, it is a principle of greatness.” – Jim Collins

Control the Process – For any organizational transformation effort to succeed, discipline and accountability must become the bedrock of the culture. Elite athletes achieve peak performance through discipline. People and organizations that lack discipline have made a conscious choice for that to be their reality. In his book Good to Great, Jim Collins said that “a culture of discipline is not a principle of business, it is a principle of greatness.” Those words might resonate with many leaders who are feeling frustrated about aspects of accountability, follow-through, attention to detail, collaboration, or some other area in their organization. The reality is that discipline must start with the habits and routines of leadership.

Healthy Competition – Competition can create conflict between and among employees. Negotiating for limited resources will also cause tension. When a team’s members understand how to have healthy debate and share their opinions openly in a safe environment, competition becomes a catalyst for innovation and improvement. We teach our clients how to have healthy conflict; it doesn’t happen overnight. It’s how teams break out of their artificial harmony and become more productive. Another key element is personal goals matter in a healthy competitive culture. Create an environment in which we all have one antoher’s back.  Instead of competing with one another when it comes to anthing of value, people understand what everyone else is working toward. Help each other achieve their goals and stay accountable, and it brings everyone closer together as a result.

But My Values May Not Be Your Values 

The dynamics of culture and group help us understand where they are and why things do and don’t happen. For some groups, it’s people orientation and for others they value results  orientation.  Think of your kids sports team – gymnastics, cheer, football, travel ball – some parents lean into the compete culture and blow-out the kids that perform below standards. Conversely, some parents are in it for community – the joy of collaborating – and skill development. Recognizing the different emphasis in values, people can begin to understand one another and bridge their differences of a culture for all.

Take Your Time

The good news is culture is not carved in stone, even though it’s a conservative influence to preserve ‘the way we do things around here.’ Once there’s awareness of current culture, you can start to guide people to a different culture type, step by step, instead of pushing them too fast. Next, you may see your culture change and develop and sustain positive change. Here are three additional resource articles you may find high-value in. If you do, please share with your colleagues, friends or on your social media.

Business Is Very Good, Why Change?

What Does It Really Take to Change My Business?

Help Me Change Them!

We don’t sell what we do. Why? There will come a day when the risk to remain where you and your business are is more painful that the risk to change. Having a phone conversation to ask your questions or if you prefer an email dialog to help you uncover what to do to influence and impact your team is always available – no obligation, no strings attached. I only accept three new clients each year, because you need commitment, support and results. It’s up to you to decide if having us come alongside you makes sense.

We offer three entry points:

90-day Quick Start. We assess where you are and where you want to go uncovering and implementing a blueprint for success. The blueprint quantifies and connects what’s healthy about your current culture to your top priorities, customer experiences, growth and performance, employee engagement and quality. You want to accelerate your desired results as your culture continues moving forward. Key benefits to the Culture QuickStart program what critical behaviors, habits,  values and climate affects your outcomes. We build in ownership across the organization like a chocolate fountain with accountability and confidence. We adjust strategies and plans with employee involvement supporting shared learning and results.

Train and Support Your Team. We begin with the 90-day Quick Start program and integrate your key people into the process. This is far beyond a ‘train-the-trainer’ exercise. We strategically build small groups or cohorts and leverage your internal network to create, build and replicate wins across the organization. Additionally, we coach your team in the same manner our culture experts learned each month. We teach, coach and develop your team to lead and implement change, accelerate change and capitalize on new areas of opportunity. One of the serendipities of this model is we develop a pipeline of new leaders. Most people aren’t inspired by logic alone, but rather by the fundamental desire to contribute to a larger cause. If you can give greater meaning and purpose to your effort, extraordinary results are possible.

Culture Influencing. We combine the first two entry points in concert and help your company get to the root cause of achieving and sustaining higher performance faster. Everything changes in the way your people and teams communicate, get things done, and achieve results. We take your team through what most organizations don’t – go deep enough to reach the true root cause in the way of extraordinary outcomes. Instead of focusing on surface solutions, we go deep into the habits, routines, and behaviors that permeate how things get done in your organization. We help you define what your desired culture looks like based on the employee population you have, your leadership team, and how-to create community, collaboration, healthy competition and discipline up, down, and across the organization that assures the highest levels of performance. If you are open to creating continuous improving levels of performance and growth in your organization, we have a methodology and unparalleled set of tools to help you succeed.

Earlier this month, I released my 7 Steps to Become an Elegant Leader with Voltage. This working book holds space for you to really go deep into the leader you are and the leader to be uncovered if you’re to successfully lead change and influence your culture. Take your best next move and get your complementary excerpt copy here! If you’d rather read my book and discover what other executives like you have uncovered, buy a copy on Amazon.

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