CHAPTER 1Preparing for the Cultural Evolution

People create the mindset, mindset shapes behavior, behavior defines culture, and ultimately, culture determines success. That's why the primary business objective is to make your people more valuable.


We were ending the second day working with a team of managers in Beijing, China. During every program I deliver, I want to ensure that expectations are met, know what their biggest learning moment is, and capture their commitment after our time together was over. This is necessary to make sure that what we worked on becomes embedded in the way the managers lead and coach.

As we went around the room, Pierre, one of the managers, paused to share a horrific experience he had just a week earlier.

“I received some disturbing news from our corporate office last week. During last month's quarterly senior leadership meeting, Chan, one of the VPs had a heart attack in the middle of the meeting. Of course, we called an ambulance immediately. Within minutes, he was rushed to the hospital.

“As you can imagine, everyone else in the meeting was extremely concerned about Chan. And yet, the meeting continued. Reports were reviewed. Business plans evaluated. Priorities reaffirmed. Team performance and scorecards assessed.

“An hour passed. The hospital called the main office to share the devastating news. Chan had died moments after arriving at the hospital.”

While there's nothing worse than the sudden and untimely passing ...

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