How Leaders Reshape Culture . . . It’s Not What You Think

Dilbert culture change

One of the foundation “principles” of academics and consultants who research and advise on Corporate Culture is that senior leadership plays a very large role in shaping and changing corporate culture, mostly through articulating new “values” and then the leaders role modelling them.  And most culture change or “reshaping” programmes start at the top of the organisation, usually with the senior team defining a new set of values as a result of a culture survey that showed gaps between the current and the “desired” culture. The desired culture being determined by employees taking the survey. After all, if employee engagement is the key to improved performance, then we need to close the gaps between the current and desired culture. Neat, tidy, logical.

The problem is, it rarely works.  Most culture change efforts based on new values shared through a cascade of top-down meetings and culture change workshops rarely creates lasting culture change. In fact, most culture change programmes fail. The “sheep get dipped”, then before long everyone is back to their old ways of working and behaving.

So what’s really going on with culture and culture change?

Most top-down, leader-led, new values roll-out culture change programmes fail for three very important reasons:

  1. The culture change initiatives were not tied directly to the new business strategy.
  2. There is no single, overarching, homogeneous corporate culture but a collection of subcultures.
  3. The workplace processes and policies haven’t been changed.

However, there have been some spectacular examples of culture change over the past few decades. The turnaround of Continental Airlines,  the rise of Yum! Brands, the restart and continuous safe power production of Three Mile Island Nuclear Plant, the turnaround at Ford Motor Company, to name a few.  And in every case, some key elements, missing in most culture change failures, were at the center of the change process.

Three Key Ingredients in Sustainable Culture Change:

  1. Tie Culture to Strategy: One of the most important elements of successful cultureStrategy - Structure - Culture change is making certain the new culture is tied directly to the business strategy. In most cases it is a new strategy, caused by changing economic or market conditions, that drives the need for a new culture. What are the key strategic initiatives? What behaviours (= culture) will be required to best deliver these initiatives?  You should be asking these questions in every department, function and every corner of the company.
  2. Find and Recruit the Informal Leaders: Most subculturescompanies are a collection of sub-cultures, each with their own “ways of thinking and doing things” and at the head of each subculture is an informal leader, usually a respected peer. Numerous studies have shown that these informal leaders are more trusted by employees than “management”. These are the real change agents in successful culture change. The dramatic shift in culture at the Ford Halewood plant was led not by management or consultants, but by Supervisors and Union representatives. Employees respected and listened to them and the old, strife torn Ford plant was transformed into a modern, high quality Jaguar assembly facility.
  3. Behaviour Change Takes External Reinforcement: Just like the dieter who gives up after a few weeks, culture change is really about behaviour change at the individual level. What is required is external reinforcement, usually in the form of reshaping the environment (in the case of the dieter it’s the contents of the frig). For successful culture change business processes and policies have to be altered to support the new behaviours required.  Everyone knows that work processes mold behaviours at work, so we must change the work processes (meetings, reviews, performance management systems, workplace layouts, etc.) in such a way as to drive and reinforce new behaviours.

At Ford, Alan Mulally significantly changed how meetings were run and how the senior executives were compensated.  At Continental Airlines, Gordon Bethune symbolically burned the Rule Book so Check-In agents could use their best judgement to service customers. He also instituted all employee bonuses monthly for on-time arrival. As a result, behaviour changed and so did the culture.

If you are thinking about culture change, then make certain you have all the required ingredients in place before you start.

Written and Posted by:

John R Childress
Senior Advisor on Corporate Culture, Leadership and Strategy Execution
Author of LEVERAGE: The CEO’s Guide to Corporate Culture and FASTBREAK: The CEO’s Guide to Strategy Execution
Visiting Professor, IE Business School, Madrid

email: john@johnrchildress.com

PS: John also writes thriller novels

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Are You Driving Blind?

a.baa-Blind-Man-Driving-Car

There is a funny scene in the movie If You Could See What I Hear, based on the life of blind athlete, singer and actor Tom Sullivan, where he is driving a car around his college campus.  Remember, Tom is blind from birth.  It’s a hilarious scene and one of my favourite movies.

tom sullivanAt one point I lived in Southern California and would bump into Tom (no pun intended) from time to time at a restaurant in Manhattan Beach and we would talk about life and running, among other things.

Tom would often say:

Most people are driving blind, going somewhere fast but not really seeing.

Are You Leading Blind?

While it may apply to many of us, the question I often ask CEOs is: “Are you leading blind”? I don’t mean that they can’t see, but there are some essential pieces of their own business that many executives, and CEO’s in particular, don’t see. Some look but aren’t able to see clearly. Others don’t even know what to look for, or where to start looking.

Everyone knows that corporate culture (the habitual behaviours executives and employees use when dealing with customers, business problems, or each other) has a significant impact on performance.  In a recent study by the Cass Business School of London, researchers studied 18 corporate disasters, including the BP oil spill, AIG, Arthur Andersen, BP, Cadbury Schweppes, Coca-Cola, EADS Airbus, Enron, Firestone, Northern Rock, Shell, Societe General and others. In every case, corporate culture (either at the executive or Board level) played a significant part in the troubles.

“The most remarkable finding is that risk professionals – on the whole a highly analytical, data rational group – believe the banking crisis was caused not so much by technical failures as by failures in organisational culture and ethics.”     ~ UK Institute of Risk Management

Do You See?

Here are some key questions every CEO and senior executive should be asking on a regular basis? And if they aren’t asking and seeking answers, it is up to the Board to ask these questions.

  • Do we really see the culture inside your company?
  • Do we see the ways in which corporate culture is hindering your organisation?
  • Do we see how the behaviour and actions of the senior team play a big part in creating our corporate culture?
  • Do we see the impact culture has on profitability, customer satisfaction, innovation, productivity, the well-being of your employees?

If you can’t answer these questions, it’s time to really look.  Time to dig in and find out.  In many cases you will be very pleased with what you see.  In some cases you will be horrified!

How to SEE Culture?

A true story about Tom Sullivan has the seeds of the answer to how executives can better see their culture:

Tom’s daughter, Blythe, fell in their swimming pool when she was very young and couldn’t swim.  Tom was the only one at the pool at the time. Yet he saved his daughter from drowning by listening for the bubbles to spot her location!

The clue? Listening!

Corporate culture is visible and comes alive in the stories people tell about work.  The stories told around the lunch counter, over cubicle walls, in the elevator, at the bar after work. If you listen well, you will hear recurring themes in these stories and see your culture being perpetuated in these stories. Stories, told often enough inside of work, create images in employee’s minds, and especially new employees, about what the company is like, what management is like, what life is like working in the company.

earThe problem with so many executives is that they talk far more than they listen, so it’s hard for them to hear (see) their culture. And the fact is, most employees trust the stories told by their peers far more than they trust executives and senior managers!

My mother used to tell me:

The Good Lord gave you two ears and only one mouth, and expects you to use them in that proportion!

My turn to be quiet and listen!  How about you?

Written and Posted by:

John R Childress
Senior Advisor on Corporate Culture, Leadership and Strategy Execution
Author of LEVERAGE: The CEO’s Guide to Corporate Culture and FASTBREAK: The CEO’s Guide to Strategy Execution
Visiting Professor, IE Business School, Madrid

email: john@johnrchildress.com

PS: John also writes thriller novels

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Keeping the “magic” alive . . . In the circus and business

Alegria

Time is a circus, always packing up and moving away. ~Ben Hecht

I can still recall nearly 12 years ago watching the Cirque du Soliel performance of Alegria in the Royal Albert Hall in London with my young daughter and her friends. We were all mesmerised by the sights, sounds, costumes and activities of the acrobats, clowns, jugglers and tightrope walkers.  And the music was continuous and mystical, creating a magical spell, not only for the audience, but seemingly for the cast as well.

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For those of you who don’t know, Cirque du Soliel began as an alternative to the traditional circus shows in Canada in the 1980s and owes its first few years of life to a grant from the Canadian government.  Fast forward and today Cirque du Soliel is a $1 billion plus global enterprise with permanent and travelling shows in major cities around the world.

Like many fledgling start-ups, in the early days the founders and entertainers were filled with passion and excitement about “doing something special”.  Bringing a new kind of circus turned theatre entertainment to children and adults. And the performances were truly magical, filled with passion and energy. Watching Alegria for the first time was an experience I will never forget.

Kooza lSo last week my wife and I got last-minute tickets to the newest show at the Royal Albert Hall, Kooza. We arrived in our box just as the lights dimmed and the characteristic mystical music began. For the next hour and a half, with a rather long intermission, I kept waiting for the “magic” to happen. But everything seemed flat and lifeless, over rehearsed and somewhat mechanical, as if everyone was just going through the motions. We both left feeling disappointed. The “magic” was definitely gone.

Where has the Magic gone?

In the life cycle of most companies, the excitement and magic, the engagement and fun starts out strong and palpable and in some sense is a key ingredient in their success and growth.  But as the company grows people and processes seem to settle into a routine; efficient, but not very fun.  And the magic oozes away without anyone inside noticing. But customers notice, and so they too drift away, looking for a more genuine buying or shopping experience.

Like vegetables, companies wilt with time unless constantly watered and attended to.

In the search for more profit, more efficiency, higher productivity, management takes their eye off the energy and passion of their business. Energy and passion is replaced by efficiency and professionalism. The magic dies. The work day becomes a grind, people become irritable, customers are a hassle, the weekend is the only excitement left.

As someone who has visited hundreds of companies around the world over the past 30+ years studying organisations and corporate culture, it is easy to tell, some times just by walking into the lobby, whether the company is powered by “the magic of passion” or just faded memories.

Many in business believe that nothing lasts forever and keeping the magic alive is 560-apple-ipod-peopleimpossible. Then again I have seen companies who remain vibrant, innovative and great places to work for decades. Apple comes to mind as constantly working on recreating the magic in new and interesting ways. Netflix has been wildly successful not once, but three times in just the last fifteen years, going from movie rentals to Prime Time productions.

Corporate culture is the battery pack of any company, and when the battery goes flat, so does the business.

Culture is often revealed in the stories that are told on breaks, in the lunch room, in the corridors, at the bars after work. Stories filled with energy and excitement, talk of ideas and new products are indicative of a vibrant culture, the magic is working. Stories of “who did what to whom”, negative talk about management or co-workers, and “them vs us” stories are certain signs of decay, loss of passion and a drained battery pack!

Who’s in charge of recharging your corporate culture? Do you even know what your culture is currently like? Can you even remember when you were filled with “the magic” at work?

 Written and Posted by:

John R Childress
Senior Advisor on Corporate Culture, Leadership and Strategy Execution
Author of LEVERAGE: The CEO’s Guide to Corporate Culture and FASTBREAK: The CEO’s Guide to Strategy Execution
Visiting Professor, IE Business School, Madrid

email: john@johnrchildress.com

PS: John also writes thriller novels

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It’s official, I am below average . . .

Brazil Soap Opera_Garc

If religion was the opiate of the masses in the time of Karl Marx, then Soap Operas might just be the opiate of the masses today.

Being in Brazil for a week has left me with the impression that I am below average!  In TV watching that is.  Brazilian based Rede Globo, is the fourth-largest public TV commercial network in the world and one of the largest producer of soap operas, or novelas as they are called in Portuguese. And the average Brazilian watches 4-5 hours of television a day, equal and some say higher than US daily television consumption.  I am definitely well below average!

384672111-favela-da-mare-providing-satellite-dish-ghettoWhat first got me thinking about television consumption and soap operas was driving across Sao Paulo for a meeting and seeing the shanty homes of clapboard and corrugated tin, many with satellite dishes attached! Not just on a few, but on many.  And my friends tell me that those without tv dishes tap into the signals from their neighbours. And the streets of Sao Paulo are lined with electronics companies and massive displays of TVs.  Television consumption in Brazil is upwards of 85%, and that’s in a country of approximately 195 million.

And television, especially soap operas have a very real impact on people and society, especially in developing countries.  Several studies have shown that in Brazil, the introduction of television and the ubiquity of soap operas (novelas) has dramatically impacted both the fertility rate and divorce rate in Brazil.  The vast majority of novelas depict happy families as being rich, white and with few children, while at the same time depicting unhappy families as being poor and having many children.  A powerful stereotype and influential role model for women in Brazil, especially the under-educated majority.  In fact, soap operas are so powerful that women routinely name children after the most popular stars! And you can even watch your favourite soap opera in a taxi cab!

In addition, long hours of television watching has been linked to reduced community involvement, as more and more people stay at home to watch the tube instead of socializing within their communities.

But, there is also some good news in that soap operas also help educate people on social issues, such as AIDS and HIV, spousal abuse and other issues in urban societies. Brazil has undergone a massive cultural paradigm shift, due in large part to how women are portrayed in soap operas, in its women’s attitudes and their self-esteem. In roughly the last 50 years, Brazil’s birth rate has dropped from 6.3 children per woman in 1960 to 1.9 today. That’s lower than the United States’ rate of 2.0.

To me, such a powerful medium for social impact can go either way, a blessing or a curse. But one thing is for certain, soap operas in Brazil are not going sway!

Written and Posted by:

John R Childress
Senior Advisor on Corporate Culture, Leadership and Strategy Execution
Author of LEVERAGE: The CEO’s Guide to Corporate Culture and FASTBREAK: The CEO’s Guide to Strategy Execution
Visiting Professor, IE Business School, Madrid

email: john@johnrchildress.com

PS: John also writes thriller novels

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Culture Change: Why Leaders Should “Micro-Manage”

micromanage-boss

My boss seems to believe in my way or highway. He micromanages everyone and fires anyone who disagrees with him about anything.

One of the quickest and surest ways to disenfranchise good executives and managers is to micro-manage them! For whatever reason, lack of trust, insecurity, arrogance or ignorance, those bosses who micro-manage their staff tend to have high turnover, low morale, and substandard performance numbers.  First of all, the job is too big for the boss to be on top of everything, second of all no one has all the right answers, and thirdly, it produces a culture of “wait to be told” and “don’t try anything new”.

The most effective leaders focus on the What and the Why, and let their people get on with the How.  They also keep an open door so that concerns and questions can be quickly raised and dealt with. They don’t micro-manage, they support and monitor.

Okay, that works in almost every business situation except . . .

Culture Change and “Coachable Moments”

Imagine this very real scenario:

 A company VP passes the open door of a manager’s office. Inside several managers and staff are gathered. She overhears the following: “I’m really upset. Those morons in Purchasing have messed up my customer order again. They just don’t care down there. Next time they want help from me they can just forget it!”

 Choice time. Should she step in and get involved in what is obviously behaviours that are not in alignment with the company value of teamwork, or walk on by, not wanting to be a micro-manager?

Nine times out of 10 she walks on by, saying to herself, “It’s just a few people blowing off steam and not worthy of senior management involvement. I shouldn’t micro-manage everything! After all, it’s not even my department”. 

When it comes to culture change, it is critical to micro-manage.  I’m not talking about normal business issues or telling people how to things, but executives and managers must get fully engaged with behaviours that are out of alignment with the culture the company wants to build. After all, culture change is really about behaviour change, and most behaviour inside a strong culture is habitual, more of a reflex or a habit than a consciously chosen set of actions.

Old habits need pointing out.  We all need someone to help us see our old habits before we can change them.  Posting new Values on the wall will not help people change old habits of behaviour. It takes the active engagement of leaders.  They need to micro-manage behaviours, not to walk by and avoid or ignore old behaviour habits.

During the early days of any culture change programme, it is important for senior managers and executives (everyone really, but it starts at the top) to micro-manage situations where old habits of behaviour are in conflict with the new culture. Without such “micro-management” interventions, you can guarantee it will be business as usual.

The hardest thing to explain is the glaringly evident which everybody has decided not to see. ~ Ayn Rand

How many ‘coachable moments’ have you walked right by? Does your management team understand it is their job to engage and redirect behaviours? To micro-manage old behaviours into new ways of thinking and behaving?

 And you think coachable moments are few and far between? Here is statistic from the 2013 Deloitte Core Beliefs & Culture survey of over 1000 employees and 300 executives . Basically (and on this they agree) both executives (81%) and employees (86%) believe that declared cultural behaviors are not upheld inside their organizations. That means a significant number of behaviours and actions not in alignment with the desired culture are either ignored or tolerated.

You get the culture you tolerate! You reinforce the behaviours you ignore. You build the culture you want through engaging in ‘coachable moments’. By micro-managing the new culture into existence. And building and sustaining a culture is everyone’s job!

So, let’s all become micro-managers, for the right reasons!

Written and Posted by:

John R Childress
Senior Advisor on Corporate Culture, Leadership and Strategy Execution
Author of LEVERAGE: The CEO’s Guide to Corporate Culture and FASTBREAK: The CEO’s Guide to Strategy Execution
Visiting Professor, IE Business School, Madrid

email: john@johnrchildress.com

PS: John also writes thriller novels

 

 

 

not plans or project details, but behaviours!

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The Blind Leading the Blind: Conduct Risk in Financial Services

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The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.  ~Helen Keller

Almost Perfect newMy first historical novel (Almost Perfect) I wrote while living in a stone Chateau in the South of France in the middle of Cathar Country.  The Cathars were a popular religious sect in the 13th Century in the Languedoc region of southern France and the subject of a 100-year long Crusade by the Catholic Church to eradicate the heretics and “save” the faithful from their evil ways. (Actually the whole thing was about money and power, but that’s another story)

During my research about the Cathar religion and the Crusade I came upon a rather Pieter_Bruegel_the_Elder_-_The_Parable_of_the_Blind_Leading_the_Blind_(detail)_-_WGA3512gruesome story. The leader of the crusading army, Simon de Montfort, in order to teach the heretics a lesson, took 100 prisoners and totally blinded all but one with hot pokers. The last man he only blinded in one eye. He then tied them all together, with the one-eyed man at the lead and told them to walk to safety in the next village. Can you imagine the terror and fright of the people in the region upon seeing a long line of blind people stumbling along the countryside lead by a one-eyed man?

Conduct Risk, Banking and the Financial Conduct Authority

In a reaction to the plethora of ethics violations among big banks and as a result of over $100 billion in fines between 2009-2012, the public and government has moved to curb these excesses through regulation, since it seems like monetary fines are not doing the job.

Recently, the UK regulators have moved beyond just assessing market risk, operational risk or credit risk to address, measure and reduce “Conduct Risk”, which is loosely defined as: “the risk that a financial institution’s actions and employee behaviour will result in poor outcomes for customers”

The UK Financial Conduct Authority is a financial regulatory body which operates independently of the UK government and is financed by charging fees to members of the financial services industry, whom it regulated. Its aims are to identify, and hopefully measure, the risk associated with the culture of a financial organisation, the business impact of culture, and employee behaviours which do not support regulation, internal company policies, and/or customer/client interests.

However, by leaving the definition of ‘conduct risk’ deliberately undefined, the FCA has stated that it is up to individual firms to decide what ‘good’ conduct and customer outcomes mean for them. Moreover, the onus is on firms to show that they have done this thinking and modified their business accordingly. There are no set procedures, policies and frameworks to follow; the FCA has said they will assess conduct risk by looking at areas across the firm’s business and behaviour to get a holistic view of conduct activity.

Regulation alone does not change behaviour, but weak regulation only adds to the confusion and illusion of change!

So, here we are again dealing with the concept of corporate cultureknowing full well that there is no clear definition. Even the academics can’t agree on what culture is or how to measure it. So the FCA has basically said, we know culture and the behaviours inside a company are important to whether or not unethical activities are taking place, but we don’t really understand the concept of culture, so we will leave it to the financial institutions to define it for themselves. And we call this regulation and protecting the public?

And I don’t blame the leadership of the major banks for complaining about the growing cost of regulation and compliance, especially when the regulator won’t do their job of really understanding what they are tasked to regulate.

Yet one can argue that it is in the self-interest of the large financial institutions to find aTrust_Banks_TRUKBIvsMPBANK_SOC_2007-07--2012-09_labeled-clipped solution to the recurring unethical actions that are creating huge fines and also damaging the reputation and integrity of big banking and threatening the future existence of their businesses.  Already alternative sources to capital are springing up by the hundreds to provide people with access to borrowing outside of the normal (and highly distrusted) banking channels. And even some of the more profitable internal banking businesses, like FX, are loosing customers to entrepreneurial businesses that offer better service, smaller fees and more transparency.

So why have the global banks continued to be plagues with fines for unethical activities? Simple, they really don’t understand that it’s not the problem of one or two rogue individuals, it’s their internal corporate culture.

“It’s not a case of a few rotten apples. We’ve had PPI, Libor, forex and all the rest. The problem is probably the barrels”. ~Mark Carney, Governor, Bank of England

One of the ways to tackle the issue of unethical behaviour in banking, by both the regulators and the companies themselves, is to fully understand the drivers of corporate culture. What creates a certain company culture to evolve? What actions and activities causes it to be perpetuated? What are the real levers for culture change?

Until the leadership of banks, and the regulators, start from a common ground of knowledge and understanding, the situation will remain one of the “blind leading the blind”.

“We simply do not know if we have the tools to change the culture of banking!” Lord Turner, FSA Chairman

Written and Posted by:

John R Childress
Senior Advisor on Corporate Culture, Leadership and Strategy Execution
Author of LEVERAGE: The CEO’s Guide to Corporate Culture and FASTBREAK: The CEO’s Guide to Strategy Execution
Visiting Professor, IE Business School, Madrid

email: john@johnrchildress.com

PS: John also writes thriller novels

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Employee Engagement or Strategy Engagement?

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When we were kids, we used to play a silly word game called “Which would you rather?” Basically someone would ask you to choose between to gross or disgusting things.  For example: “Would you rather eat a worm or step in dog poop barefoot”?  Disgusting, I know, but it was just one of the dumb things my gang of friends and I did when we were sitting around bored.

But when you think about it, life is really all about choices, and some of the choices are not very pleasant.  Fortunately in the business world the choices are less gross than when I was a kid, but choices none the less.

And employees have numerous choices about how they spend their time at work!

GallupQ12Survey_x2One of the biggest buzz words and movements going around nowadays is Employee Engagement.  Basically Employee Engagement has to do with the theory that if employees are satisfied with their work and the working experience then they will put more effort, thought and creativity into their various job roles, therefore making the company more productive.  It makes sense and there are numerous studies that show a positive correlation between high levels of employee engagement and company performance.

So, employee engagement is a good thing. And most of the activity focused on generating greater employee engagement falls to the HR folks, with of course active support from company leadership.  And there are some legendary examples of how to generate greater employee engagement.  Google is well-known for its approach to engagement through employee perks; games areas, company cafeterias, pizza parties, on premise dry cleaner, workout areas, relaxed dress codes, time to work on new ideas.

Strategy Engagement?

With all the things to build employee engagement around, where is the best return for both employees and the company?

Too often employee engagement schemes lead to employees liking their work and enjoying the workplace, but not always to better company performance.  My suggestion is shift the focus of employee engagement from just satisfaction (happiness) at work to an equal measure of focus on engagement with the company strategy.  What I like to call, Strategy Engagement!

To me, getting all employees to better understand the business strategy, its Purpose (beyond just shareholder return), how the strategy will improve the lives of customers and clients, how it can promote teamwork, innovation and personal and professional opportunities, is an important part of the Employee Engagement movement.

The real purpose of work is not happiness (that’s created by our own thoughts and life choices, not the work environment), but to help employees grow and develop professionally and personally, and to improve the lives of our customers. WalMart fully engages its employees because they are convinced that the company business strategy will help lower overall prices for customers and result in them being able to afford an improved lifestyle.  Zappos.com is an entire business built on a culture and business strategy of engaging employees in order to deliver superior customer service, thus making customers lives easier and more productive.

Engaging employees in both the company Purpose (Mission) and Strategy is motivating and invigorating for employees as well as gives a boost to strategy execution.

Here’s my favourite personal example: The British Gas Repairman

This winter our central heating broke down and I called the British Gas repair line and they sent out a service technician.  After he finished servicing our boiler and got it up and running, we were standing in the hallway chatting. This guy is definitely not a college graduate or an engineer, but still very competent and personable.

Being the curious sort I ask him about the recent new developments in digital temperature control systems, and since I am a user of Apple technology products, I ask about the new Nest thermostat.  We both agreed that digital is a future home technology whose time has come and we also agree that the Nest is an aesthetically beautiful and functionally designed.

But then he blew me away with his understanding of the British Gas business strategy by checkouthero2-80a79d88c586e53b44a9fa9297e8a10estating that their competing product, The Hive, is not only a home heating controller, but the beginnings of a digital controller for the home with the potential to link smart devices inside the home through one single hub. He also said that rather than buy it at the store, if I were to purchase the Hive from him, he is authorised to sell and install it for half the store price.

When I asked why the “deal”, he replied, “Actually, sir, it’s part of our company strategy to install as many as possible, not only because they are as good or better than the Nest, but because it then sets up our long-term strategy of helping  you connect and manage your entire home digitally, all through our Hive hub and the new products we are developing for the smart home.  Plus it fulfills our vision of helping build a sustainable business, reduce energy consumption and lower greenhouse gases!”

He was fully engaged!  And the multiple benefits were very evident: high energy and job satisfaction for him, a satisfied customer, and a commitment on my part to seriously look into the Hive product for my home!

What are you focusing your employees on? Don’t forget your business strategy.

Posted by:

John R Childress
Senior Advisor on Corporate Culture, Leadership and Strategy Execution
Author of LEVERAGE: The CEO’s Guide to Corporate Culture and FASTBREAK: The CEO’s Guide to Strategy Execution
Visiting Professor, IE Business School, Madrid

email: john@johnrchildress.com

PS: John also writes thriller novels

 

 

 

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