Corporate Culture

En number of books have been written and are constantly being written about talent management concepts such as employee engagement, mindfulness at work or building trust. In spite of such literature, these aspects barely seem to be showing any upsurge. This is proven each year by Gallup’s damning statistics where barely thirty percent of the US workforce seems to be positively engaged. One book that has never gone out of fashion or impact is The Leadership Challenge which was published back in 1983. Its effect is so strong simply because it speaks about sharing in the gains with the key stakeholders. A simple message, yet highly effective as put in by a CEO. A recent follow-up study to test this hypothesis was done on experts working in the fields of leadership development and corporate training. The first thing unanimously agreed upon was top priority be put towards developing a company culture. A SLAM model may be put in place to develop this involving- social connection, leadership excellence, aligned culture and meaningful life. A give and take maxim needs to be followed here so that employees are treated just as customers would be. Recruitment must be focused towards service-oriented personnel. All kinds of questions posed to employees, need be reframed to include a “to you”, as that will change the context completely. Finally, companies must put their best foot forward in ensuring diversity at the workplace. This allows a greater set of ideas to permeate in and innovations thrive.


Uploaded Date:17 March 2018

Certain cultural factors have always existed that have stymied organizational growth. In addition, there are certain factors, which have increased the complications for the digital age. A risk-averse work culture, division into silos and a lack of customer-centricity in decision-making are aspects untenable with the digital age. Cultural barriers form the biggest obstacles in digital transformations. It has a negative correlation with the economic bottom-line. Failures are asymmetrical with time, so no timelines can be drawn om future happenings. The digital age has further complicated matters by its winner-takes-all nature. ING for example is one company that has ridden through its transformation most effectively due to its agile management techniques. The employees have been provided additional management training sessions under executive coaches to wean them pout of unproductive practices. Frontline workers have been empowered as they are the ones who gauge the real time business intelligence on customer perceptions. In order to make bold strategic moves, digital aspirations need to be webbed into the company culture as Amazon, Nordstrom and the Irish bank AIB have repeatedly demonstrated. The resources available need be reallocated looking into this evolved scenario. All business decisions need to be taken around the data collected on customer requirements. For this, the data must be gauged from disparate parts of the organization.


Uploaded Date:01 March 2018

The eighteenth annual survey of CEOs conducted by PwC presents some interesting findings on how to best achieve excellence in organizational design. First of all, one needs to make peace with the past by acknowledging the mistakes made and trying to rectify the flaws in the game. Any given company has a certain DNA to begin with. This DNA is a combination of formal and informal forces. Formal forces involve the decision-making, the motivators, information flow and the structure. Informal ones are the norms, commitments, mindsets and networks prevalent. The design to be effected needs to go along with the general flow of the company DNA. The company structure is not the last word on the internal people management, so it may be fixed last, not first. A critical aspect of organizational design is the talent management, in particular the ability to get the best out of existing personnel. One needs to identify the scarcities and constraints preventing the company from growing fast. One this is done, the leadership needs to take hold of controllable factors. A sense of accountability needs be fostered across the organization. A lot of pressure is exerted on the team due to the benchmarks established. These benchmarks must only be seen as ideal standards, not as minimum guidelines. The hierarchical setup must reflect the company’s mission and vision. Truly good organizers leverage the informal networks, by eking out information and acting on insights. Finally, the team must build on latent strengths which may even be reinforced through a formal setup.


Uploaded Date:23 February 2018

Company culture and employee engagement are two vastly, though related aspects, not to be mixed up with one another. While the former implies entertainment and perks, the latter is about decision making freedom, work-life balance or the opportunity to work on innovative projects. Both are necessary, but working on one does not naturally translate to the other. Marketing research leader Gallup has confirmed that companies which feature on the top quartile of employee engagement tend to be more profitable than the others. The cultural drivers of either though differ depending on industry in question. In a fast-evolving field such as social media, a disruptor such as Facebook made strides by empowering the employees and tolerating mistakes as part of the learning curve. However, in more traditional, process-oriented places such as utility firms or power plants, mistakes can prove to be costly, so adherence and safety are stressed upon. Business consulting behemoth PwC confirms that the top reason for employee drain happens due to employees working on unrelated tasks. Company culture also needs to consider other factors such as costs, and things will not change overnight. Australian airliner Qantas is an example of a company that did not buckle under pressure, allowed short term brand erosion, but ended up winners, all because they had a strong company culture at heart.


Uploaded Date:14 February 2018

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