Saturday, June 13, 2015

Considering Culture in Your Strategic Road Map

A strategy is a roadmap that guides organizations to higher levels of performance that encourages productive growth. Executives can develop excellent business strategies that take into consideration market projection, resource allocation, human capital, and financial streams. To their own detriment, many CEOs do not factor in organizational culture into their strategies and how it impacts organizational goal attainment.

Culture should support business strategy (Eaton & Kilby, 2015). The values and semantics contained within culture should enhance business strategy through proper orientation of people's expectations. If there are contrary elements within a culture, the values should be adjusted to ensure they realign to meet organizational needs.

Consider an example of how culture can support or detract from organizational objectives. Two companies seek to become market leaders, but one company promotes employees based on patronage and the other from performance. These values become embedded into the culture of the organization and create a way of thinking that impacts daily operations.

Over time, poor values will cost the company their productivity and put them into market irrelevance and bankruptcy. Companies thrive off of their intellectual capital and when this is traded for patronage and personal gain the innovative and productive spirit dissipates.

Building a strong culture supports the achievement of organizational objectives by creating a way of thinking. An organization based in service quality should consider a culture that has focused values. Likewise, a company that relies on lean manufacturing promote efficiency.

Culture is a collective pattern of thinking that leads to action. As a whole organization, the actions of individual workers will determine whether or not a company will be successful. Developing the right culture will create social pressure to recruit, promote and perform at certain standards that helps the organization become stronger. A comprehensive strategy must include the soft cultural skills that support goal attainment.

Eaton, D & Kilby G. (2015). Does your organizational culture support your business strategy? Journal of Quality & Participation, 37 (1).

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