Is Your Strategy Hungry for Culture?
Business is 100% about people. You can’t have one without the other. People purchase from you, create products for you, serve your customers, deliver your goods, and tell others about you.
At the centre of your strategy should be your organisation’s culture. The better the culture, the better its ripple effect on the other threads that make up your business strategy.
But of course – bad cultures exist, and they’re like poison to your business.
As a leader, you’re the only antidote.
With that said, you are responsible for understanding the importance of culture and how to turn a bad one around.
What’s the importance of people and culture in a business?
A business begins and ends with its people.
We have all experienced what it’s like to have the wrong people on a team – whether a sports team or a work team. You are set up to fail if you have the wrong people for the job. Similarly, if you have the right people for the job but treat them poorly, you set them up to fail.
Wherever there are people, there will be a culture, whether you like it or not. Culture doesn’t replace strategy or performance. Business owners frequently claim that “culture eats strategy” (Peter Drucker), but this saying is often used out of context. Your business strategy should include culture.
Some people think of culture as people sitting around a campfire singing kumbaya. Culture is an outcome of the environment in which your people perform well. Culture should drive performance. Company culture is a direct reflection of the brand, its leaders, and its people.
What role do people and culture play in a business’s overall strategy?
People should be central to the overall business strategy. Without them, you won’t be able to fulfil your strategy. Your people and culture reflect your brand/company identity. The right people and team culture are necessary to entice buyers who relate to your culture and attract staff who feel connected.
Your business’s culture will turn your people and customers into advocates or critics and determine employee retention rates. From sales and marketing to operations and financial performance, culture will impact every part of your business for better or worse.
Can your business culture be managed?
Yes, business culture can be managed. However, a quick team-building event or workshop won’t cut it. Your business culture must be lived and breathed daily. I often say that culture can’t be just words on a menu. It must be the entire meal.
You must know your values and live them. If one of your values is fun, then your employees need to be able to say they have fun at work. Or if one of your values is being respectful, then your team needs to be respectful of one another.
It is also essential to measure your company culture through employee engagement, team spirit, net promoter score (how likely people are to recommend your company), customer feedback, retention rates and the ease of adding new team members.
Can a ‘bad’ culture be turned around?
Signs of a ‘bad’ company culture include lack of communication, mixed messaging (signalling that the company’s vision is not aligned), unwillingness to change processes/strategies, and a low staff retention rate.
A ‘bad’ culture can be turned around, but how long it takes depends on several factors. The deeper the rot, the longer this can take. Sometimes to change the culture in an organisation, you will need to bring in or replace people. Regardless, there won’t be a significant change unless the leadership is aligned.
Often, the culture directly reflects the leadership. If a business owner wants to improve their culture, they must first look in the mirror and be prepared to go on a rough journey of change.
What can a CRO do for your people/culture?
A Chief Revenue Officer (CRO) oversees every function that impacts revenue within a business and implements initiatives that improve business revenue streams.
CROs are deeply invested in a company’s values and can use them to plan the team culture. They will then set metrics to measure the culture and performance and work with leadership to ensure that they are kept accountable and the changes begin at the top.
Once a clear culture plan is created, it is critical to ensure it is communicated well and maintained. Team culture is something that you can’t just check on once a quarter; you should measure it daily.
Involve your CRO
Another essential aspect of a successful pricing strategy is your Chief Revenue Officer (CRO).
A CRO oversees every function that impacts revenue within a business and implements initiatives that improve business revenue streams.
This role combines the data and knowledge of all parts of the business and connects it to the market and ideal customer. A CRO understands the full effects of discounting and the impacts on reputation and profitability. They will know what the market is prepared to pay for your goods/services and how to capture the best value for both parties.
Your team culture is instrumental in the success of your business strategy, and a big part of this comes back to the organisation’s leadership.
With the right team, outstanding leadership, and a clear plan created by your CRO, you can create an incredible team culture in which your employees are driven to create excellent work.
If you want help with your organisation’s culture to help drive your revenue goals, contact Attain today.
Sharn Piper – CEO
M: +64 27 733 4333
Having successfully led numerous sales teams, built multiple successful businesses I know what it takes to create a sales process that is robust, repeatable and produces consistent results when applied in a consistent way.