Culture Chat

And other musings on humanizing the workplace
Workplace Culture: More Than Foosball Tables

Workplace Culture: More Than Foosball Tables

November 6, 2017
Kyle Fitzsimmons

We can already hear the grumbles. “Yeah, but we’re not Zappos and we’re not Netflix.” This is true, and, for the record we are not recommending that you try to become them, because you cannot. You just can’t copy a culture. You have to create it.

And that is the opportunity here. Many organizations fail to actually create their culture. They inherited it. It evolved organically. It followed the personality of the founder...and then the first hires, the advisory board...the clients. Cultures, both good and bad, seem to be accidental. Yes, every organization has a culture, but a scarce few can even articulate what it is, let alone point to the specific steps they have taken to create it, change it, or sustain it. And because things are changing so quickly, any culture that is evolving on its own is falling behind, causing a drag on performance, rather than enhancing it.

The Accidental Culture

If you want the results, then you need to work on culture.

Unfortunately, this is frequently where people give up. “Culture work is too hard. I don’t know where to start. I tried some changes and they didn’t stick. I don’t have the time or money for a three-year culture transformation project.” Sorry, but we’re not buying these excuses any more.

Culture work is not as hard as you think it is.

  • Think culture is too fuzzy a concept?

  • Think “values” are too touchy-feely to work in the business world?

  • Think change is too hard?

We’re not over-simplifying, and we’re not sugar-coating. We’ve stripped this topic down so the companies that want to leap ahead can stop wasting time debating the semantic difference between “vision” and “mission,” and start creating more powerful organizations that out-perform the competition today. Let’s go.


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Image credit: flickr/Sancho McCann


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