Lately I’ve been having conversations with several small and medium sized business owners looking to transform their business.
The transformationthey seek ranges from process automation, system evolution, IT, branding and marketing, people skills, creativity and innovation and customer experience.
The one key thing they fail to mention is company culture.
I believe they are underestimating the most important part of their business transformation.
If you don’t have the right company culture in place for your business transformation, then the likelihood of success is diminished significantly. That said, you should have a strong culture in place irrespective.
Transforming your business starts with a mindset change for you as a leader and then your employees. The idea for change needs to be seeded and internalized first, and this starts with a culture shift.
Employees need to rally around the company purpose and vision. They need to understand where the business is going in the long term and see the bigger picture and their role in achieving this.
They need to be invested in the idea and in the road map to transformation and eventually help evangelize the new company direction.
This is what ultimately drives successful businesstransformation and helps create passionate employees who help drive the business forward.
But how do you achieve a cultural transformation? Here’s a simple roadmap I’ve designed:
1. Assess where the businessis currently. Figure out what is the current culture, how do people feel working in the company and how is the company perceived externally
2. Company DNA: This is about digging deep and asking questions about why you exist as a business and what is your purpose
3. Company code: What are the values and guiding principles you will live by
4. Employee code: This is about how you want your customers to feel about your company and your brand
5. Product code: How do you want to design and create your product and what gives you your competitive edge
6. Evangelize: Once you have the culture code, you need to evangelize this through your ‘cultural’ ambassadors
Fixing your culture sets you up for long term business transformation success and helps build a company that employees love and customers adore.
Invest in building your company culture and reap the returns down the road.