Culture is not what you do, but what you have done.
—Joey Reiman, on culture
I love my morning yogurt. The culture that grew it makes me feel healthy and ready to take on the day. Culture works the same way in organizations. When it is active and alive, it makes your day. It’s what gets you up in the morning. Culture creates aliveness.
Culture is composed of an organization’s shared beliefs. When those beliefs are aligned but not intense, malaise develops in the company. When the shared beliefs are misaligned and intense, disagreement brews. Only when beliefs are aligned and intense does a strong belief system develop.
Different companies have a variety of different qualities that underlie their culture. But all successful companies have a strong culture. For instance, Hyundai offers customers the WALKAWAY Program, which allows consumers to return their Hyundai if they lose their income and cannot make the car payments.1 Compassion is their culture. Organic grocer Whole Foods Market counts the planet as a stakeholder. John Mackey is the chief executive officer (CEO), but his company’s culture reports in to Mother Nature. In this way, culture creates stories.
The 14 stories of the Newell Rubbermaid headquarters building in Atlanta, Georgia, tell of each of the many brands’ cultures. The elevator ride takes you on a trip through what Newell Rubbermaid calls “Brands That Matter.” Nearly all the company’s ...