A Leadership Culture

“Would not an organizational culture naturally emerge
from a Leadership Culture?

 

I propose that by creating a ‘Leadership Culture’, such would manifest the desired culture better than the 20th Century traditional ‘culture change’ approaches.


A Leadership Culture

A short musing… a consideration… maybe, even a re-framing… time to explore…

As has been noted by many esteemed ‘thought leaders’, as well as throughout behavioral science research, lectures, books, consulting practices and scholarly institutions around the world, ‘leadership’ is considered to be the core influencer of organizational culture.

Thus, many view ‘leadership’ as the ways-and-means to achieve the desire culture (the desired result).

It seems to me that there may be a different ‘perspective’ to at least consider rather than the traditional perspective to put the focus on the ‘organizational culture’ as the end result.

For all the money and efforts that go into corporate change initiatives, they have a decidedly mixed success rate. Only about half of transformation initiatives accomplish and sustain their goals, according to a survey on culture and change management by the Katzenbach Center.

According to a 2013 Katzenbach Center global survey of more than 2,200 executives, managers, and employees on culture and change management…

…the success rate of major change initiatives was found to be only 54 percent.

Additionally, the following are some of the noted key findings from the study:

Key Findings  – The Importance of Culture in Enabling Change

Strategy& Global Change Surveyhttps://www.strategyand.pwc.com/media/file/Strategyand_Cultures-Role-in-Enabling-Organizational-Change.pdf

What can we draw from these indicators?

Maybe we need to ask ourselves some questions like:

Based on the above success rates of the current focus on ‘organizational culture change / transition / transformation’, or, whatever term of your choosing, maybe we have to look at this ‘organizational culture change thing’ differently.

What if the focus on ‘organizational culture’ emerged into a different framework?

What if we focused not on the ‘desired organizational culture’ as the prize, but shift our focus to ‘a leadership culture’ not simply as a ‘ways and means’ but as a continually emerging resolution in itself.

Thus, would not an organizational culture naturally emerge
from a leadership culture?

 Traditionally, we approach leadership as individuals, or a set of positions. We assess and analyze to identify measured competencies and capabilities as individuals and/or groups. We seem ‘see’ leadership’ and ‘leader’ not as their own cultural entity, but as a potpourri of skills and capabilities and through hundreds of workshop hoping that ‘something’ will stick.

Traditionally, it also seems that we disassociate/ analyze / segment / objectify / separate ‘organizational culture’ from ‘the self’, from ourselves, as if ‘culture’ was an entity into itself.

I am suggesting that we see leadership as a culture within ‘itself’ – and that such is the differentiating ‘end result’. (Differentiating; evolve so as to lead to a new species, or develop in a way most suited to the environment; become distinct and acquire a different character.)

 Thus, I am exploring here the possibility that the ‘culture framework’, maybe, has to shift.

 This morning I revisited the first ‘article’ ever given to me from one of my undergrad professors in 1972. The article is by Magoroh Maruyamam, Toward Human Futuristics, 1972.

“Human Futuristics, as a study of future cultural alternatives, will not be another branch of ‘science’ in the traditional sense. Its function will differ from that of science in many respects. First, cultures are not ‘existing objects’ to be observed, analyzed and explained. Second, future cultures cannot be predicted by extrapolating the past ‘pattern’ of change, the past rate of change or even past rates of acceleration of change. There are too many unprecedented innovations taking place which render extrapolations invalid. Third, culture changes do not just happen. Therefore, culture changes are subject to people’s goals, imaginations, will and choice.

In the past, in most cases, cultures were either stationary or very slowly changing transmitted by the older generation to the younger generation through the process of socialization. Sudden cultural change, when occurred, was merely a matter of transition from one stationary pattern to another stationary pattern.

Today (1972), we are entering an era of transition of a different nature – from a chain of quasi-stationary patterns to a duration of perpetually transforming patterns which depend on people’s will and choice.”

I believe that such an era of “of perpetually transforming (emerging) patterns” is even more relevant today than ever as the rate, complexity and substance of change are moving at a rapid pace and will continue to increase.

I also believe that in shifting the focus from ‘leader competencies’ to creating a ‘Leadership Culture’ will make a difference especially as we begin to ‘see’ culture as ‘A Living Culture’ – always emerging and unfolding…

I also believe that developing a ‘Leadership Culture’ needs to be approached as an ‘integrated, whole leadership system’.

As I read the items and their stats above, I even more firmly believe that ‘emergent change’, and ‘emergent organizations’, are the keys to organizations today as they face a significant increase in the rate of change and greater complexities in the issues, opportunities and challenges they face today… and tomorrow.

Thus, I am offering the thought that:

An organizational culture will naturally emerge from a ‘Leadership Culture’, that success rates will increase, and that such will make a key difference in bringing organizations into the 21st Century.

By the way… a bit of a marketing thing here…

It just so happens that the EOD® Platform creates a ‘Culture of Leadership’.

In addition to creating Emergent Organizations®, the EOD® Platform is a ‘leadership platform’, meaning that this is the work of ‘leaders’ throughout an organization at every level and function (where ‘leader’ is not necessarily occupied by ‘position’).

The critical work of leaders is simply to create and continually develop a viable, and a vibrant organization.

Throughout the EOD® Platform process,
leaders learn to become Leaders
by doing the work of leaders.

 

Through this EOD® Platform a ‘Leadership Culture’ is created…

Through a ‘Leadership Culture’ an organizational culture will naturally emerge…

 

Your thoughts are always appreciated.

Patrick Trottier

Emergent Organizational Development®

https://emergentchange.net/

 

 

 

 

(more on this in a future write-up…)

About Patrick A. Trottier

I am a 25 plus year applied Organizational Development practitioner having honed my craft in the U.S., Canada and internationally. Presently living in beautiful Vancouver, B.C., I am currently developing the next evolution of O.D. named 'Emergent Organizational Development and Change® (EODC)®, EOD® focusing on Emergent Change® and the development of Emergent Organizations™.
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