Positively impacting society on a global scale through culture awareness, education and action.

For many months, the board and CEO of your organization have been focused on a more generative and healthier balance of efficiency, velocity, flexibility, long-termism, sustainabla-bla-bla results, strengthening core yada-yada values, human capitabla-bla, clarity of purpose, and profit bla-bla-bla. (Even if you believe in these “buzz words,” we all recognize that they can be a trigger/distraction.)

The organization is doing a lot in the name of change with regard to strategy, vision, and business process. And your company has already invested millions in new product development/innovation, agile processes/structures, office design, change management protocol, new internal communication campaigns, and many town halls. You even built beautiful digital centers of excellence.

But still, transformation isn’t happening fast enough.

The advancement of the Internet over the past two decades hasn’t taught us anything if it hasn’t taught us that we must run our organizations differently for our businesses to survive. For the last three to four years, the related trendy topic has been “digital transformation.” But what does this mean, and how do we as leaders prepare for this?

In the six years since the first edition of The 31 Practices book was published, the topic of values has caught the imagination of people all over the world. In the second edition of the book in 2018 (Chapter 2, Values), we described how the inaugural World Values Day took place in 2016 and that people in more than one hundred countries took part in October 2017 and 2018. Putting values at the centre of everything an organization does is the starting point to creating a strong and authentic brand. This is particularly relevant for service organisations where people are a core element of their offer.

We are part of an unprecedented work environment, with technology changing on a seemingly daily basis and teams working together from all corners of the world. Some of us may feel the need to compete with our colleagues to stay ahead in—or even just keep up with—today’s ever-changing business environment. But if you want to create a collaborative workplace culture that will produce breakthrough results that digital, agile, and other business transformations are built to achieve, then collaboration trumps competition by a long shot.

Talent is attracted to your company based on the culture and image your organization presents, which is visible from the outside. But a sought-after culture starts on the inside. What is seen on the outside is merely an expression of what is really happening on the inside. To create a sought-after culture, you must first stabilize your internal environment to cultivate a thriving culture.

Almost every organization wants to increase accountability, yet the road to an accountable culture is often rocky, narrow, and slippery. Most executives can quote books, articulate models, and share statistics about accountability, yet the gap between knowing and doing remains wide.

The mantra of work these days is to do more with less, which means companies are hyper-focused on hiring and fostering highly productive employees. What companies should really be striving for is authentic, true employee engagement with a culture that supports it.

Competing and winning can be very satisfying and even just taking part is often a terrific experience. “Competition brings out the best in people,” or so the adage goes. But what if the culture of your workplace was all about competition?