Culture Eats Strategy For Breakfast

No matter how far reaching a leader’s vision or how brilliant the strategy, neither will be realized if not supported by an organization’s culture.

“Culture Eats Strategy For Breakfast,” a remark attributed to Peter Drucker and popularized in 2006 by Mark Fields, president of Ford Motor Company, where it continues to hang in the companyʼs War Room. As the Leader of Ford, Mark was keenly aware that no matter how far reaching his vision or how brilliant his strategy, neither would be realized if not supported by the culture. Realizing that culture is an outgrowth of leadership and could be changed, culture became job # 1 for Mark. He was aware He knew that culture was the sum total of what people at Ford believed and valued and that together they would shape their norms of
behavior and ultimately determine how things got done. His task was to replace a culture often characterized by bitterness, distrust, fear, and with the projected layoff of 30,000 employees, a sense of betrayal with one characterized by creativity, innovation, and a sense of responsibility for the entire organization. One look at Ford in 2010, and the rest is history.

What Ford did is not magic. You too can crack the Culture Code by Design. We at Relational Dynamics Institute know the formula. We will guide you in implementing a model for an ongoing development cycle, thus creating a process approach of Value-based Planned Change.

The model will integrate 26 individual and organizational values within and between the multiple level of complex social interaction system in order to foster trust and ethical behavior (See SYMLOG). Following interviews with key members of your organization from the shop floor to the Executive
Suite, you will be invited to randomly select 200 persons from all levels of your organization and ask them to rate the following questions:

Questions Participants may rate:

CUR: In general, what kinds of values are currently shown in the culture of your organization?
FUT: In general, what kinds of values need to be shown in the culture of your organization in the future in order to be most effective?
REW: In general, what kinds of values are members of your organization actually rewarded for showing in behavior now?
CXP: In general, what kinds of values do you expect your significant clients or customers would rate your organization as showing toward them?

The data will reveal the values expressed and held by every segment or level of the organization. We know that people will conflict over values and not behavior and that their is a wide range of behaviors can be tolerated or even supported if the values inferred from the behavior do not conflict with the values of the people. We also know that people tend to unify around common values and are motivated to collaborate when the individual and organizational values expressed in behavior promote teamwork and
when values promoting individualism are minimally emphasized.

Our model will identify those values that create polarization and thus need to be minimized as well as identify those values around which people will unify. Your people will discover how their culture, policies, procedures, and reward systems contribute to, or interfere with the realization of their vision and strategy. They will determine what changes and commitment are needed to support the vision and strategy. It worked for Ford, why not you?