Culture happens. You shape it or it shapes you. How good are you at shaping a culture?

As stated previously, CULTURE represents the difference between the behaviors that groups tolerate—and encourage—and those that they do not tolerate.

Some groups make their culture explicit by writing it down. Stating the culture explicitly makes it easy for all, especially new members, to know where this line is. Explicit statements of culture also make it easier to reinforce and enforce the culture—especially for those lower in rank. This articulation is important because unlike with rules and policies, adherence to culture must be the responsibility of every member of the group regardless of placement in the hierarchy.

Rules and policies pale in comparison with CULTURE when it comes to determining behavior within any group. When a group steps up to state its culture on a piece of paper, its words literally create a place from which to stand and operate. These are some of the most senior conversations on the planet.

Values and Guiding Principles—Cultural Building Blocks

Values and Guiding Principles are essential building blocks of culture. However, it's frequently unclear what they are and how they are different from each other, yet intricately linked.

Values are single words that describe “ways of being.” The group chooses to raise these words above all other words. These shared ...

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