Corporate Culture

Several big businesses have been guilty of not willing to change at times of much societal and technological change. The phenomenon is known as loss- aversion, a term much used in the social sciences. This has been very well explained in a recent book The Power of Bad: How the Negativity Effect Rules us and how We Can Rule It. It has been co- written by two authors. One of them is Roy F Baumeister, who is a renowned research psychologist, while the other is John Tierney, an award- winning journalist. Well- funded organizations remain cautious to the point of never exploring realistic business innovations. To change this mentality, the top leaders of the firm, need to build in a “tough- minded optimism”, a term coined by the legendary leadership scholar- John Gardner. Startups are doing a better job of reinforcing innovations. This book mentioned also cites the power of four, where four positive points are needed to counter one negative.


Uploaded Date:27 February 2020

A report has been tabled by management consulting giant McKinsey on why companies must whole- heartedly embrace diversity at the workplace. There are commensurate financial returns to back up this entire idea. Among the companies surveyed during this study, those that are in the top quartile tend to be thirty- five percent more likely to post above median average financial returns. Those that have directed their talent recruitment drives to ensure greater gender diversity, do likewise. Diversity is also more prized across financial parameters in the UK, like in the USA. The top performers’ EBIT (Earnings Before Interest and Taxation), rises in the UK by 3.5% for every ten percent commensurate rise in gender diversity. Racial and ethnic diversity too have similar outcomes.


Uploaded Date:21 February 2020

Management thinkers Lisa Lahey and Robert Kegan have used the term “developmental cultures” to great effect. This has managed to highlight organizations that are not obsessed with performances alone, but also curate a growth culture. The work environment at such places feel safe, as people can experiment, or even fail, as long as it helps them learn on the path to developing business innovations. Continuous learning is encouraged through transparency, inquiry and curiosity. Self- protection, judgment and certainty are not the learning modes. Time- defined manageable experiments are set off at such places. There is also a continuous feedback loop, to ensure instant rectification in processes. A delicate balance is striven between nurturing and challenging.


Uploaded Date:28 January 2020 

There are several telltale signs that companies need to detect early on that will help them realize that the prevalent corporate culture is likely a liability. One of those early signs is a lack of investment for the personnel, through measures such as an insufficient amount of corporate training being bestowed. Another being the fact that at such places, no proper chain of accountability may exist. The talent recruitment pipeline is faulty as well, with less focus on inclusion or diversity. The top management at such firms often behaves with complete impunity, believing they will get away. The work environment has too frequent high- pressure situations. And finally, the ethical standards at such companies, are ambiguous, with a lack of clarity on several matters. In order to guard against such behaviours seeping in, the company ought to ensure explicitly commitment, from those at the very top. A cultural vigilance team needs to be put in place. Similarly, a cultural vigilance strategy needs also to be deployed. The existing behavioral expectations need to be refreshed. The annual planning and strategic development processes need also to weave in culture as a primary marker within it.


Uploaded Date:27 December 2019

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