All companies have a culture whether they are aware of their culture or not. Most company executives agree that culture is the key element of a company’s success. Pacific Crest Group (PCG) puts a large emphasis on understanding, utilizing and improving the culture of your company.
Culture can be best understood when you think of it in terms of the behavior of a Tribe. “Tribes are groups of twenty to one-hundred-fifty people in which everyone knows everyone else, or at least knows of everyone else.” Large companies consist of a “network of tribes.” (1)
The benefits of an effective company culture include high performance, outstanding innovation and unparalleled team work. The achievement of a successful culture leads to a positive spiral that makes the team’s performance seem almost unfathomable to people outside the tribe.
The key to increasing your company’s performance is to first identify which stage of growth the culture of your company resides. You can then begin to move your organization’s culture to a higher stage of growth and thereby increase its performance.
There are five stages of growth as shown below. Stage two through four indentifies some key elements to move to the next level of growth.
Stage One: Tribes whose members are hostile. They gossip, create scandals, steal, lie and may become violent. It is impossible for a business to survive in this type of culture.
Stage Two: This is the dominant culture for about a quarter of most workplace tribes. Members tend to be passively antagonistic, sarcastic and resistant to management’s objectives. Recommended ways to move to a higher stage of growth include identifying each individual’s skills, offering progressive training with attainable goals and providing opportunities for members to use their skills to make contributions that are meaningful to them based on their values.
Stage Three: Almost half of all workplace tribes are in this stage. Behaviors include “knowledge hoarders” who want to outwork and outthink the people they perceive to be their competitors. Manipulation techniques are common. Suggested ways to move to the next stage includes expanding the definition of success to include collaboration. When people receive training, require that they share the training with other team members so those members can understand and apply it.
Stage Four: Team members shift from thinking “I am great” to “we are great.” People are happy to work together for the benefit of the company as a whole. They understand that for each individual to be successful the company must be successful. Moving from stage four to stage five requires eliciting feedback from all stakeholder groups including groups that the tribe does not normally communicate with. The company must seek out best practices from different industries. It focuses on global problems rather than just industry problems.
Stage Five: Less than two percent of all tribes are in this stage. Members who have made tremendous innovations in their fields use those skills and their future potential to make positive contributions on a global scale.
Pacific Crest Group (PCG) provides professional services that keep your business focused on your primary objectives. They create custom made systems based on creative strategies that are always delivered with exemplary customer service.
A PCG professional is happy to meet with you to discuss solutions for your unique requirements specifically designed to maximize all of your business opportunities.
(1) CultureSync’s book entitled “Tribal Leadership” is based on ground breaking research in the study of the culture of Tribes. Please see www.culturesync.com for more information on tribal culture.