Really, really hard.
Yet as leaders we throw the phrase culture change around like we are passing out candy on Halloween.
The Long Haul Vision
Wanting to change your organization's culture, whether it's to pull out of an employee morale ditch; to address major changes underway; or to build the energy for an exciting new period of growth, requires a vision that is sustainable over a period of years.
Culture change does not happen quickly. Ever. At least in a positive direction.
So, who is responsible for this vision of the future? That's not as easy an answer as one might think. Of course the senior leadership team must articulate a global vision for the future. However, neglecting the input from the team is a treacherous path that should be avoided.
The combination of strategic vision and employee buy-in is powerful.
Really, really powerful.
The Compelling Story
The hardest part is actually not the visioning process, or collecting input from the team. The hardest part is always execution. Sustaining the message over time, particularly when the inevitable challenges arise are exactly when the true skills of the leadership team become apparent.
How many of us have seen grand roll outs of "new and life-changing programs" at our organizations over the years, only to see them drift and die?
You've put in the time to build your vision.
You've put together a compelling story that touches each employee.
Stay the course. You've earned this opportunity to truly change your organization!
How About You
Are you considering real change in your company? If so, invest the time and resources to build your vision, create your story, and stay focused through the highs and lows. It will be worth it!
I'd love to hear from you.