I am excited to announce that my long time personal coach, Chris Edmonds, is launching his latest book this week, “The Culture Engine”. I had the opportunity to learn from Chris on a first hand basis, which I count as real blessing. He taught me how to build a purpose-driven, values-based culture. I can attest to the fact that his methodology works! It transformed my outlook on the importance of leadership and the positive impact that effective leaders have on organization and team effectiveness.
In “The Culture Engine”, Chris has done an outstanding job of clearly outlining the process of how to be intentional about building your desired culture within an organization or intact team. He provides tools to assess the current state of your culture, as well as a step-by-step process on how to build your desired culture. He pulls no punches, that this is not easy work, but promises it will be the most significant work that you will ever do. Having personally put his processes to work during my career I can attest to the effectiveness of the methods and tools provided in this book.
Anyone in a position of leadership will greatly benefit from reading this book, if they desire to make a positive impact on those people they are serving as well as their organization.
Chris provided a guest blog to post for the Triune Leadership Services website to provide a taste of his writing and passion for driving a positive culture in your organization. I hope you enjoy it!
Originally published on April 28, 2014 at www.drivingresultsthroughculture.com
Ouch! Thank you!
The delivery truck pulled to a stop in front of the two mountain cabins. The driver’s territory included serene meadows, thick forests, and mountain vistas.
Mountain customers’ homes are typically spread out, far from each other. These two adjacent homes shared a driveway with their respective properties extending into the valley beyond. They were very good customers so the driver made deliveries two or three times a week.
Both customers have big dogs that hung out in their yards. The dogs are always excited to see the driver. Why? He gave them doggie treats as he walked up to set the packages on their owners’ porches.
One of the dogs, a healthy 150 pounds of love, has a tendency to wander. His owner installed an electronic, invisible fence around their yard and put a battery-powered collar on the dog. When the dog strayed too close to the invisible fence, the collar first gave an audible warning. If the dog continued towards the fence line, the collar gave the dog a small shock.
Rather than wait for the driver to walk over and give it a treat, this big dog would walk right through the electric fence line. The puppy just couldn’t wait! As it crossed the invisible fence line, the shock would make the dog whine and shake a moment – then it would continue to the driver, tail wagging, for his treat. The dog would immediately head back home, across the invisible fence line – shock, whine, shake, and all.
The driver was amazed that the dog would go through that zap for a little treat – two or three times a week. It was, apparently, worth it to the dog!
Do team members in your department get enough praise? They’re probably doing good work. They’re applying their skills towards the accomplishment of team goals. Their efforts and results deserve recognition.
A 2012 Stepstone survey in Europe revealed that 74% of employees rarely or never receive praise from their managers.
These employees probably understand the dog’s decision. That little zap is worth getting some praise.
All of us want to know how we’re doing. The absence of feedback leaves us in a void, not knowing if we’re on the right track or if what we’re doing generates value.
Don’t leave employees in the dark. Provide feedback regularly, noting specifically what they’re doing that you value, that is on track – and specifically what they’re doing that is off track. Redirect them so they contribute steadily.
Set the context for their work – help them understand why you need them to do things a certain way. Help them understand the bigger picture – how their efforts align with others’ efforts to deliver promised products and services.
Don’t make them wish for the electric collar.
Chris Edmonds is the founder and CEO of the Purposeful Culture Group, which he launched after a 15-year career leading and managing teams. Since 1995, he has also served as a senior consultant with the Ken Blanchard Companies. Chris has delivered over 100 keynote speeches to audiences as large as 5,000, and guided his clients to consistently boost customer satisfaction and employee engagement by 40+% and profits by 30+%. He is the author or co-author of six books, including “Leading At A Higher Level” with Ken Blanchard. His next book, “The Culture Engine: A Framework for Driving Results, Inspiring Your Employees, and Transforming Your Workplace” will be published by John Wiley & Sons in September 2014.