Hugh Macleod’s consulting company, Gapingvoid, defines organizational culture as,
The shared basic assumptions, values, and beliefs that characterize a setting and are taught to newcomers as the proper way to think and feel, communicated by the myths and stories people tell.
While that’s a great clinical definition, Macleod has also described why and how he works as,
I work extremely hard doing what I love, mainly to ensure that I don’t have to work extremely hard doing what I hate.
If the cultures we seek to create and foster, with current members and newcomers, the sense that we work hard to do what we love so we don’t have to do things we hate, people will probably like our culture.
And, if you want to make people do things they hate, or force the love out, or guilt, shame, and maim people into submission, just don’t be surprised when your system produces exactly the results it was designed to produce.
If you’re a leader, give at least the abstract to Gapinvgoid’s Culture Study a read. It’s inspiring.