• dragonfish

Blog: Why culture should never be just a project

Updated: Sep 23, 2019

3 months? 6 months? Maybe even 12 months? How long do company culture projects typically take before they quietly slip off the meeting agenda? The fact is that your culture should never be a short-term project or have an ‘end date’. Businesses that slip into this mentality are missing out on opportunities to increase their performance, effectiveness, and future revenue.

Why is your culture so important?

Over half of the FTSE 350 estimate that investing in culture increased operating profits by 10% or more. [i]

The most successful businesses will typically have a vision for the future. They will also likely have a strategy in place that describes the route they’ll take to achieve their vision. But, one thing they all understand is… it’s their people that will get them there. And those people need to not only understand the organisation’s vision, purpose and values, but also take these into account in their everyday behaviours. Values are important statements, but behaviours are tangible – and they affect performance. In essence, your culture and future success is about truly understanding (on an individual level) what behaviours drive performance and empowering your people to deliver your purpose every day.

The importance of your culture should never be underestimated. It’s critical to your success. Defining and launching your culture to your people is not the end of the story – in fact it’s only the beginning. It’s how you embed, measure and sustain your values and behaviours and overall culture that generates the best long-term results - and sadly this is the part that’s too frequently overlooked.

Why can culture fall by the wayside?

Only 19% of board-level interviewees feel that primary accountability for culture sits with them. [ii]

One of the most common reasons that culture fails to remain a priority is because nobody really knows who owns it. Is it HR? Is it the customer experience, marketing or brand teams? Even in businesses that do have a dedicated resource, the topic of culture still fades away due to only anecdotal success stories, and no real data/evidence. But again, this approach needs a re-think. When culture is kept within a single team, such as HR, it becomes stifled and ineffective. Your vision, purpose and values need to belong to everyone, they need to be discussed far and wide, they need to impact daily behaviours, and they need to be driven by all your people. In addition to this, the value of your efforts needs to be measured against KPIs, including brand and customer alignment, among others.

Make culture valuable, every day

65% of organisations say culture is more important to performance than an organisation’s strategy or operating model. [iii]

Defining, launching and embedding your culture within your business is no easy feat, but with the right support, it can become a living, breathing entity, and be effectively measured and managed. So, don’t miss out on the benefits of a rich company culture by allowing it to become an afterthought. Instead, choose an experienced partner to help you crack your culture code and transform performance, both in the short and long term.

CLICK HERE TO VIEW & DOWNLOAD our infographic on 'why culture is not just a project'. To find out more about why investing in culture is so important, or, to arrange an exploratory discussion with one of our specialists to find out how dragonfish can help to transform your business performance, please email enquiries@dragonfish-uk.com

[i] www.ey.com/Publication/vwLUAssets/ey-culture-and-boards-at-a-glance/$FILE/ey-culture-and-boards-at-a-glance.pdf

[ii] www.ey.com/Publication/vwLUAssets/ey-pdf-is-your-board-yet-to-realise-the-true-value-of-culture/$FILE/ey-is-your-board-yet-to-realise-the-true-value-of-culture.pdf

[iii] www.strategyand.pwc.com/global-culture-survey