Do you and your team understand the culture of your business or organisation or are there several different versions depending on who you ask? Your culture feeds into everything you do and in times of crisis is an invaluable unifying force. Here’s how to establish yours.
- Start by asking the question. Challenge each member of your team to write down, anonymously, a paragraph describing the culture of your organisation. Now write each one up on a board and ask people to vote for which most accurately reflects you as a team. This is your starting point. If you are a large organisation you will have to assign a smaller project group.
- Go back to basics. Revisit your mission and vision statements and your core values. Don’t have them? The Difference Between Vision and Mission Statements. Are they still fit for purpose? Do They reflect where you are now? Are they aligned with what you have agreed reflects your culture? If not, or you don’t have any, plan a session where you can start to work up your ideas.
- Engage the team. Once you have done the groundwork, the temptation is to go away, revise what has been produced and then start on populating your website, designing graphics and writing briefing documents. Big mistake. In our experience you will probably go through three, four or more iterations until you hit the sweet spot… and that will only achieve the right result if everyone is engaged.
- Don’t be po-faced! Your early efforts will include words like honesty, integrity, trust, expertise etc…. Which is all well and good but you must work hard to reflect who you really are with all of your quirks and foibles. The Astley Media core values include: ‘Give your all… and then a bit more’, ‘love to laugh’ and ‘Enjoy the adventure’. It doesn’t all have to be stuffed shirt, corporate speak!
- Once you have agreed on your vision and mission etc draw on the biggest piece of paper you can find a Roman Arch. Think of the foundations either side as your mission and vision statements the pillars as your core values and your culture as the arch on top. I actually spent hours creating a life-size one and writing in all of the relevant info but a colleague thought it was waste paper and threw it away!
- Now it is agreed and visualised, go to town on communicating to the wider team. Flyers, organograms, presentations… the world is your oyster!
- Keep it alive… Like people, companies, evolve, change and grow. Much better to review your culture document once every six months and keep it fresh than to put it in a cupboard somewhere and let it slowly die. After all, your culture makes you who you are.
Astley Media offers a Discovery Package which will help you establish your culture, values, mission and vision. For more information, email email@example.com