Saturday, May 1, 2021

Cultural Savvy Corporate Board

Culture is not a mythical "thing" that comes automatically. Culture results from a lot of factors such as the business endeavors, goals of the leaders and their personal philosophies to reach the goal, their emotions in various scenarios and so on.

Digital means to break down the past and lead toward the future with a quantum leap. Culture is the "fabric" of an organization and habits/behaviors/practices being woven into that fabric. By culture, we mean the way things are done and allowed to be done in the organization every day. 

The totality of mindset, attitudes, behaviors, practices, values, vision, mission, strategy, and risk appetite is the definition of culture. The corporate board plays a critical role in setting guidelines, envisioning the future of the business, overseeing business strategy, setting the right cultural tones and driving transformative change smoothly.

Corporate culture plays an important role in building a consistent business brand.
Culture and brand are the most important thing that a company will make since they will define how the company interacts with its various stakeholders. Culture is 'established' by those at the top, the corporate board, as well as the top leadership team, is there for setting the tone of the corporate culture. The strategy defines what they will do, with whom and how they will be successful if objectives are achieved, but this will mean nothing if the underlying values do not focus on values and a culture that are aligned with the strategy and facilitate success.

"What comes first, strategy or culture?" It is a strategy. Company needs to determine its direction, and then assure that the culture supports that strategy. The corporate board can contribute to brand enhancement as a coherent effort of overseeing strategy and nurture a culture of creativity. An ultra-modern board can set a clear choice among future scenarios that advocate advancement and promote the organizational brand and encourage positive culture tune. It’s important to envision “To-Be” state first because it creates a paradigm shift in digital management discipline. When building the future state, make sure that you break it down into looking at the ideal future first, which brand will you build? Customer-centricity, innovation champion or leading with speed? By envisioning “To-Be” state and clarifying the brand core. The result is a set of norms and values that determine how people will behave and relate to one another in a particular setting.

Auditing culture, assuring to the board, and what that would look like; and the corporate board reporting on culture to shareholders and other stakeholders. These are two recent / expected developments. The consistency or discrepancy between behaviors and practices on one hand and stated values, vision, mission, strategy and risk appetite on the other, is what should be audited. It’s important to start productive conversations about changing it: what leaders pay attention to, measure and control; how crises are responded to; perceived criteria for getting ahead (or not); stories and rituals; physical space; organizational design. 

If corporate boards do not pay enough attention to the culture within the company, the organizations will become irrelevant sooner than later. Since culture can undermine strategy, they certainly should be concerned and seek assurance that the culture is aligned with the strategy and the values that form the foundation of the culture are aligned with the expectations of customers as part of the risk assessment.

Culture is reflected and influenced by policies, practices, rewards and incentives: Culture shouldn’t be seen as some superficial phenomenon such as business slogan or holiday celebration, but rather, more profoundly, what are the ideas within the walls that derive profitable action, positive influence, and collective confidence. Often, executives and the board assume that these things are correct. but employees know they are not and can tell you what gets in the way. In a culture savvy digital organization, self-motivated leaders, teams, and employees have a passion for challenging themselves, advancing their thinking ability, making things happen.

Therefore, corporate boards play a significant role in setting good policies and tuning the right culture. People have to be given the opportunity to be creative, they have to become empowered and discover innovative ways to do things, have a recognition and reward mechanism to constantly reinforce what's desired and appreciated in terms of employees behavior/ skill/ approach. In all the conversations about culture, we need to remember that it is the policies, procedures, rewards and retributions that drive behavior and it is the employee behavior that expresses "culture." The company goals, policies, internal control requirements, customer experience improvements/customer satisfaction, etc., all should be synchronized without compromising the need for any item, staff want to be involved in developing policies and procedures to achieve the organization’s goals,

Culture is not a mythical "thing" that comes automatically. Culture results from a lot of factors such as the business endeavors, goals of the leaders and their personal philosophies to reach the goal, their emotions in various scenarios and so on. Culture should be one of the hot topics in the agenda of the corporate board as a good culture lifes a so-so strategy, but a negative culture causes the mighty fall.


Post a Comment