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My last article delved into ‘culturally fitting’ things to your business operations, but it goes a bit further than what I eluded to last time.

Employees for instance, how well did you select them for cultural fit to your business? In some cases there is a chance you wanted to stretch the boundaries and go for someone a little ‘left of centre’ but in the main you would go for people who ‘fit in’.

Imagine you have a business where you like to ‘rule the roost’, you have power and control over everything that happens. However one day you hire an employee who has ideas for all sorts of aspects of your business. While the rest of the team seem content to sit there and be managed/led/manipulated to do what you prescribe, this new person wants to have input.

You might just find there is a level of unrest which develops amongst the team when they start to say to the new team member… “Don’t make waves, it’s too hard to change the bosses mind…”

You start to take time to listen to the new guys approach and take some of the ideas on board. The new guy starts to see changes and offers more info, options and ideas. Some get utilised some not.

A new project pops up, it presents a bigger chance to have input, the team gets shown plans and a few simple thoughts get put into the mix. The new guy offers some bigger ideas… the boss says “mmm go on” but the rest of the team don’t know what’s going on. The new guy might start to feel isolated and pulled between opposing forces. The team on one side saying “Don’t make waves and the boss saying, “Mmm maybe there’s some value in this”.

My take on this story is that there has not been enough work done on the company values and beliefs. The boss has not explored the broader business context and asked, ”What if there is more to business than meets the eye?” followed by “What if the business could be so much more?” And “What if I could develop and utilise the collective intelligence of the team to benefit all of us?”

If some of these questions had been asked earlier, then the whole scenario could have changed, people might have more interest in the business, feel a greater sense of control about their destiny, want to contribute ideas, and perhaps the profitability of the business might improve as a consequence.

The answer, provide a respectful environment where people are treated like people, they think, they feel, they want to achieve. Then and only then can you have a business which truly explores it’s potential.

Cause your business to become culturally fitter than what you currently have and see what happens, you could be pleasantly surprised.

Steve Gray - Steve is a business educator - Trainer - Speaker (Steve Gray.biz). You can get his Leadership E Book from http://theleadershipguy.com.au The info provided in these articles is for educational purposes only and is intended as a starting point for you to build your business from, not as specific advice.
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