4 steps to engineering a great culture

Successfully creating a mission-based, values-driven team is anything but touchy-feely.

The credit union industry is dominated by logical thinking, tight adherence to processes, and extensive regulatory oversight. By comparison, the task of creating a world-class culture is often mis­perceived as a squishy, lovey-dovey, emotional thing. That perception is flat-out incorrect.

Building a great culture requires every bit as much structure, measurement and refinement as any operational process. As a result, a culture can literally be “engineered” and executed in a predictable, high quality way. Note that because you are working to craft a sense of shared purpose and values, engineering a culture does take longer than most other organizational changes.

Here are four key steps to take:

  1. Start at the top. Before you even begin with questions about mission, vision, and values, you need to be certain that you have senior executive team buy-in. Employees look to senior leadership for cues on what is valued. If there is any lack of stamina at the leadership level for sustaining the cultural change you seek to accomplish, you will fail.


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