The Culture Creator, part I

Words, phrases, and nicely phrased mission statements need one thing to insure they are inbred into the culture of an organization: repetition.  

Your mission, vision, and values are not worth much unless they are lived out in the lives of those within your organization.  Mission, vision, and values (MVV) are not goals, they are who you are.  Goals come out of your mission, vision, and values.  If these elements define who you are then you must find a way to be them.

The best way I know of to get the MVV off the page and into the lives of your team members is to review them every day.  I know Ritz Carlton and Marriott do this (or at least used to) and Pizza Ranch does this (www.pizzaranch.com ). Every day take a few minutes—perhaps before every shift—and review at least one element of your MVV so that your team members can have that element in the forefront of their mind.  And then throughout the day, perhaps at random times include your Vision or Mission into a conversation. 

But beware of the culture destroyer: after a while you get the feeling that you’ve talked about it enough, quoted it enough and that your team members know it, so enough already!  Isn’t it insulting to keep repeating it?  And so, you stop repeating it and referencing it. Then after a few weeks or months, it gets forgotten; lost in the hustle and bustle of doing business and everyday life.

But repetition is the mother of learning.  When you go over something every day, it gets top of mind focus.  It also has a chance to bypass our skeptical minds and get installed on our emotional hard drives so that we begin to just live it out.

In creating culture your number one ally and strategy must be repetition. 

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