GDP Blog

How do you measure culture

Posted by John Powter

Jul 29, 2014 10:09:00 AM

Last week we wrote about the leading failure point in mergers and acquisitions is inability to mesh the cultures of the two organizations, So how do you measure culture? You know when it is good but can't put find the problem when it is bad. We have a full culture assessment we take our customers through call us at 800-473-8697, to access the short form click on the button to the right.

Culture culture

You can almost feel it when you walk into a company, after 2 minutes its either a funeral parlor or a vibrant office. Southwest Airlines Zappos, Apple and Disney come to mind of people that have it, Dell, Microsoft and others are struggling which means performance, size, or market cap are not the cause.

"You cannot manage what you do not measure." Is the fundamental business mantra, so we need to begin with creating a culture index. If you are going to start with corporate mumbo jumbo that's a mistake, I see many companies with very nice mission statements on the walls with stale cultures.

1. Begin with do your employees understand what you will stand up and die for, sounds dramatic, but that is a way to identify your values. If the whole world suddenly made what you stand for illegal or immoral would you still stand by it?

2. Next is what does the world think of you? Employees, competitors, vendors, and customers what are the three things that come to mind when someone asks about your company. Send an anonymous survey with a Dominos Pizza gift card for completing it, I promise it will be the best $10 you have ever spent.

3. Walk the walk- you may have great values and your employees understand them however if you as a company or leader are not in alignment with what you say then it is all for nothing. If diversity is one of your core values and yet you hire from the same nearby colleges and all your employees look and think like everyone that's not diversity.

Once we have a set of values, and they are in alignment with what people think of us, and we as a company "walk the walk." Now we set a weighted score to each of those and begin to track only now can we begin to track and improve our culture. Set clear but attenable goals, a wise old man once told me. "Employees will leave you for what they are staying with you for" If it is money someone will always come pay them more. However, if it is your culture that is much harder for someone to recreate.

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