After several years of being relegated to the sidelines, companies are once again paying attention to the significance of their corporate culture. Culture was a hot topic among CEOs and leading consultants in the early 2000s, but it slipped off the radar screen as wild profits and social media ballooned with the new millennium.
But, ironically, culture has returned thanks to auditors and regulators who have discovered that culture matters. In fact, a company’s culture has proven to be a reliable indicator of the company’s vulnerability in terms of risks, employee turnover, compliance complications and legal entanglements.
At the same time, auditors and regulators are finding that companies that operate with a high performance culture have fewer risks and regulatory concerns because they have developed a balanced among their business operations, profit strategies and customer relationships.
And so, culture is making a strong comeback and once again occupying an important seat in the C-suite.
What is “culture,” and what aspects of culture should a company focus on? CRI Global CAPS, an international consulting firm that helps companies design and implement corporate culture strategies, defines Corporate Culture as “the blending of your company’s history, heritage, standards, values and attitudes with the experiences of your customers and employees.” Because your corporate culture impacts performance and profitability, it is much more than a simple behavioral model that evaluates the norms and expectations of employees and how they perform their work and interact with customers.
With regard to what you should focus on in terms of refining your corporate culture, there are three key areas known as the Triad of Business Success™. The three legs are your Business Operations, Profit Strategies and Customer Relations.
As you look at your relationship with consumers, it’s important to recognize that culture plays a significant role in your bottom line and how consumers relate to your company and brands.
About the Author. Tom Hinton is president of the American Consumer Council, a non-profit consumer education organization.. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org