Culture eats strategy for breakfast

Strategy is about shaping the future. Strategies require human intervention for a constructive conclusion. As career consultants, we are in a business that is all about people. Culture that we foster in our organization is the key to the success of our candidates, business partners and of course our organization. As Mark Fields, President of Ford Motor Company, popularized in 2006, Peter Drucker’s remark “Culture eats Strategy for breakfast” effectively highlights that however brilliant a strategy may be, it will be unsuccessful if not supported by the culture of the organization.

To understand this better we need to evaluate the culture of our organization.Is it ridden with lack of confidence, distrust, silo thinking, or characterized by creativity, team work, bottom line thinking and a sense of responsibility?

Every organization needs to identify its cultural amplifiers, in our industry some of them can be:

Focus: We need to focus on our client / partner need and commit to helping them create a winning team. It will come from concentrating energy into things that are specific. Our focus has to be on building a relationship with both sides, to be a brand that comes to the mind as soon as the need for an employee or a job comes up. It can be almost like toothpaste and Colgate!!

Simplicity: We need to be able to take out the complexity of a situation and appear as a simple, honest and reliable team. This can be successfully done and showcased in the way we present ourselves, the tone of communication we use etc. Keeping communication simple makes it more sustainable.

Team work: We are awesome at solving problems, but often, only our own part of the puzzle, without considering the wider implication. It takes two to Tango. At the end of a work day we should be able to answer the question, did I work for the organization today or did I just fulfill my personal agenda.

Where focus tells you which mountain to climb, simplicity shows us the path of least resistance that will get us to the top. Teamwork of course will ensure that the last person to reach the top of the mountain was also within time line!!

Culture changes and gets imbibed when we feel, breathe and experience it and not just talk about it.

Any strategy of ours will be a winner if each of us is walking in the same direction and have set our eyes on the same target.