Culture plays an increasingly critical role in work today. While culture can be difficult to define and measure, it fundamentally shapes organizational success, innovation, and engagement. Leaders reinforce cultural norms and behaviors every day, whether intentionally or not, and can play a critical role in shaping their organization’s culture—and thereby performance.

Simply put, culture is made up of the rules and assumptions for getting work done—the beliefs, working agreements, and tangible behaviors that guide and motivate people at work. You can identify culture, and—with some focus and determination—you can change it.

CFAR’s CultureLab has innovated a powerful method and set of tools for culture change, learning from work we do inside CFAR on creating the culture we aspire to and which supports our success. Leveraging ideas from CultureLab, CFAR works with clients to lead culture change from both the top down and the bottom up— diagnosing cultural challenges, thinking creatively about how to create culture by design (versus by chance), and respecting differences and the value that they create. Our approach creates a lasting capability to change and adapt culture to get the best from people and processes to positively impact both short-term and long-term performance, and includes:

Discovering and diagnosing

Sense-making and direction-setting

Implementing and embedding

Ultimately, our approach to culture change provides clients with a clear point of view of their cultural aspirations and where culture may be holding them back, a plan to implement change, and an understanding of where change is progressing and where more focus is needed. CultureLab shares ideas and resources through Fieldnotes, our newsletter on organizational culture, which you can subscribe to here.

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