Every leader wants their organization to be successful and there are many definitions of success. For some, it’s about creating great products or serving customers. For others, it can be about growth within profitability.
Whatever your organization’s definition of success is, the leader’s responsibility to achieve it and, of course that begins with a strategy.
Strategy is a word that defines how an organization will achieve success.
But your ability to execute on your strategy is dependent on your organization’s culture, a positive and flourishing culture, enabling strategy to be executed while a negative or unhealthy culture, torpedoes or undermine strategy.
This connection between culture strategy and success is well documented in research and practice and can be summarized by a common phrase. Culture eats strategy for breakfast. It’s a quote commonly attributed to Peter Drucker, one of the top management gurus of the 20th century.
In other words, if you care about the success of your organization, you need to care about culture, leaders often put together great strategies and they often assemble great teams to execute on those strategies, but they still come up short and that is often because they haven’t created the right environment or high performance culture to enable success.
So what is a high-performance culture through work with leaders and organizations around the world? Here are six characteristics that define a high performance culture.
- Everyone understands why their work matters, people only give 100 percent of themselves their creativity, their motivation, their focus when they are able to connect their day-to-day activities with the purpose of the organization, something they know will make the world a better place.
- Values are practiced throughout the organization. Identifying values and holding people accountable to them creates an environment of trust and alignment around priorities. This in turn allows the organization to move with greater speed towards achieving its purpose.
- All activities provide real value to the customer organizations with a high performance culture which can prevent and remove the wasteful tasks that take away from fulfilling a central component of their mission, which is to serve their customer.
- People’s roles match up with their passion and capabilities. It takes time to understand what they’re good at and what they love to do when this is done intentionally and an alignment with the organization’s purpose teams become dramatically more creative and productive.
- Teams grow and flourish without dependency on individual leaders. Leaders are intentional about delegating both responsibility and authority, so their teams are empowered to make decisions in alignment with their organization’s mission, vision and values.
- Bottom-line results and goals are achieved. Building a great culture is not mutually exclusive. With growth and profitability, instead, they are the natural consequence bottom line. When leaders build a high performance culture, they are creating a foundation that will enable success.
Now that we know what a high performance culture is, how do we create leadership? Is the key you won’t get the culture you need without high-performing leaders, but this doesn’t happen by accident, they must be developed.
Great leaders are consistently practicing that produce extraordinary results. Follow the practical tools and techniques that turn managers into high-performing leaders that produce high performance cultures as well as pass through to your team members, become unstoppable and achieve goals.