Written by: Maureen Bridget Rabotin, CGEC, author of Culture Savvy
In The Change Book, authors Tricia Emerson and Mary Stewart bring to the surface the underlying currents of culture that, if not understood, bring conflict to communication and resistance to change initiatives.
Culture is the result of implicitly learned values, beliefs and assumptions that teach us how to behave – “how we do things around here.” By revealing the intricate elements of culture, Emerson and Stewart do an excellent job of simply stating that when taken into consideration, culture becomes the added value not the detrimental difference. Just as with positive psychology, change initiatives need to not only look at what is not working but what we want to do differently while being attuned to what makes the system stable - the cultural foundations in place.
Through repeated and reinforced behaviors, subcultures are adhered to in exchange for recognition and rewards. Being alert to these cultural influences keeps us focused and aligned. In turn, new consistent behaviors replace the old and no longer true ones as organizations seek to succeed in today’s gyroscopic world of globalization. The Change Book underlines the importance of being culture savvy.
This blog is cross-posted on The Change Book blog.