Francis Bacon said, “The great end of life is not knowledge, but action.” The same can be said of conducting a culture inquiry of your business. Without application, it is worthless.
There are two phases of our work at Premier Rapport: the culture inquiry is the first. This phase involves developing a mission, vision and strategy; analyzing company data; employee mapping; setting bench marks; and measuring and evaluating performance against industry standards and determining tactics. At this point, I write a detailed report for leadership with my findings and recommendations.
The best thing for leadership to do at this point is to take the information, and sit with it for a week or two. There may be some surprises, perhaps even some shocking information. Eventually, most leaders come to realize that the answers to their “people problems” and profit issues are in their hands and must be addressed. Filing the report in the drawer and going about business as usual will not change the situation.
Some companies decide to move ahead with the second phase, what I call the “culture correction” on their own. Others prefer to hire me to implement it. The culture correction consists of creating employee teams to address the tactics recommended in the report. The teams develop SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-focused and Time-bound) based on the data collected earlier and the IMPACT Method itself.
Next the teams create and complete tasks to accomplish their assigned goals over an agreed timetable. After the tasks are implemented, focus groups determine the effectiveness of the solutions. The focus groups may find that further refinement is necessary, in which case the teams make adjustments to the plans and implement those, or if the plans were successful in meeting the objectives, the focus groups approve the teams’ work.
Accountability, follow-up and communication are key to success. That is why many organizations find it difficult for internal staff to handle a culture shift alone and choose to work with an outside consultant who can set priorities and keep the process moving along at a reasonable pace without stalling.
A consultant is able to take the wide view, pull you out of the weeds, and properly strategize, execute, and engage your internal teams to accomplish your goals. She is also able to hold your employees accountable without getting sucked into the day-to-day tasks that an on-site employee tends to do.
In addition, as founder and CEO of Premier Rapport, I have multiple certifications in the processes I use for culture curation. I have created the personal certification for culture curators, offer CEs approved by ICF, PMI, HRCI, SHRM and ATD.
In short, when you hire me to complete your culture shift, you know that you are ensuring the best outcome.
Shelley Smith, CEO of Premier Rapport, Inc., helps business owners and executives find and repair the “culture leaks” in their organizations that prevent them from being as productive and profitable as they can be. Using a proprietary process of inquiry, awareness and leader development, she helps businesses create the workplace environment teams need to drive success. Throughout her 30-plus-year career, Shelley has developed and implemented plans for large corporations such as Marriott as well as for small “mom-and-pop” businesses to advance their strategies and manifest stronger company cultures. She is the author of five books, including “Brass Ovaries Own Yours: Master the Mindset, Change the Game” and “How to Avoid Culture Big Fat Failure (BFF).” She has been published in Money Inc., Forbes, Entrepreneur and many others.