This is an excerpt from a regular column that I write – Neely Ready – which appears in a magazine called Australian Anthill.
The Importance of Culture
Every organisation has a culture. Spend time observing the day-to-day goings on within, say, a medical practice, a law firm, an airline and a fast food franchise, and you will notice some stark differences. While each business might have common objectives – serving clients, generating profits – it is very likely they go about these objectives in vastly different ways.
Culture, broadly defined, is the personality of an organisation. It is the collective, learned behaviour of its staff (“the way we do things around here”,) and the values, norms and beliefs that shape that behaviour.
Culture drives the behaviour of people. It drives how your staff choose what is done, and what is left undone; what is valued, and what behaviour, actions and outcomes are rewarded. Culture operates (and can be influenced) at three levels: