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The Primes: How any Group can Solve any Problem by CHRIS McGOFF

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Chapter 8

Building an Intentional Culture

Quick—what does “culture” mean? There are consequences to using more than seven words to define culture.

Culture is the most powerful determinant of how a group behaves. It is the line drawn by a group that separates the behaviors they will tolerate from that which they will not. The group enforces adherence to this line. Authorities cannot mandate culture.

Culture always exists; it is built either passively or actively, by default or intentionally. Culture can be implicit—that is, conveyed through stories and actions—or explicit, captured in a document or other medium.

When culture fails to drive behaviors that are essential to the success of the group or organization, authorities develop, implement, and enforce rules, policies, and laws. Excessive rules, policies, and laws represent a failure of culture.

An intentionally designed, powerful, and generative culture is a precious asset for the group to appreciate, value, and defend. The next three PRIMES reveal to you how to design and sustain an intentional culture that brings joy and high performance to your groups.

A culture is made—or destroyed—by its articulate voices.

Ayn Rand1

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