Umbrellas for Forecasting Organizational Culture and Climate

Umbrellas for Forecasting Organizational Culture and Climate

Some images are mind-provoking. The ideas of this buzz were inspired by two photos: the weather-forecasting umbrella and umbrella stands.

The weather-forecasting umbrella is handy and smart. By connecting its handle to weather stations it can tell by displaying one of three main colors. When you walk toward the door to leave for the day it switches on theΒ appropriateΒ color β€” green for clear, blue for raining, and red for storming. So, you decide if you need to take your umbrella or not before leaving indoors. The handle is easy to remove from the umbrella to protect it from thieves.

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You may wish to watch the video below to know more about weather-forecastingΒ umbrellas.


A new approach is to have stands that do the same function as the umbrella handle. The stands do the same job as the handles of the umbrella do. This way you don't need to carry the expensive handle with you.

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The question that crossed my mind was if the organizations could develop similar interactive umbrellas or stands to forecast the business climate. Equally important is predicting the climate within the organization. If this climate is stormy as evidenced by stands showing red color then we may tell that this organization is going to lose its talented employees and shall experience high turn-over rates. The employees shall be disengaged.

There are voluminous studies on the issue of business climates and their connection to the prevailing culture within an organization. I find myself asking if business culture is weather-like and the prevailing moods in organizations represent the prevailing climate within these organizations. NASA defines the difference between weather and climate is a measure of time. Weather is what conditions of the atmosphere are over a short period of time, and climate is how the atmosphere "behaves" over relatively long periods of time. Culture is a complex issue like weather and over long periods of time we get repeating patterns that act as attractors and shape the behavior of employees in these organizations. Even though the umbrella shows red color because of increased global competition, varying customers' moods and expectations and the rapidity of technological breakthroughs; still these organizations live in the past and stick to what they do best. The management fails to see it is stormy outside as the management prefers to keep doing what the organization does best- but only to vanish from the markets. The management wouldn't risk changing what it has been successful at and run the risk of changing their work focus. The indoor umbrella shows it stormy outside and the only solution acceptable is to stay indoors till a hurricane swaps the whole organization.

Organizations need to juggle many balls at the same time. Surely among them are the culture, structure and the leadership of an organization. Organizations need to make serious efforts to change culture while seeking to improve the climate of business. The management has to realize that the structure of the organization is very crucial because it is more difficult to juggle balls when standing on glassy structures. Rigid structures will only lead to increased stress and lowering creativity to generate creative solutions to the ever-changing climates outdoors.

Not all balls are the same. Some balls will break into pieces if allowed to fall down. Some balls are resilient and rubber-like. Other balls are tiny because they have low priorities.

The Organizational Climate Survey (OCS) is based on work begun at Harvard University by psychologists Litwin and Stringer. They identified six parameters to determine the climate prevailing in an organization. These are

1. Clarity: everyone in the organization knows what is expected of them

2. Standards: challenging but attainable goals are set

3. Responsibility: employees are given authority to accomplish tasks

4. Flexibility: there are no unnecessary rules, policies and procedures

5. Rewards: employees are recognized and rewarded for good performance

6. Team Commitment: people are proud to belong to the organization

There are six balls to juggle to improve organizational climate, which feedback on organizational culture and vice versa.

Can we have an umbrella to forecast the climate within organizations and more importantly how this climate may be related to the weather of organizations (cultures)? Like we may predict to some extent the weather we need to have color-coded indicators for in-house weather. In a constantly changing world no organization may afford to stand the same.


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Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#67
Thanks for the lovely lins Alan Culler. I should have been more patient in my last response because I posted before reading your second comment. Yes, achievement-oriented companies seemed the most successful one. COmmend and power driven companies lead to stress, polluted work climates and I am not surprised that they came last. I do appreciate your great contributions to the discussions.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#66
Thank you Alan Culler for your clarification. I understand the copyright restrictions. However; it is interesting what you wrote "...three motive needs. Brigadier was Power-driven, Balance was Affiliation-driven, and Blazer was Achievement-driven". I just wonder if balanced-oriented groups shall succeed in turbulent climates.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#65
Great Alan Culler to bring his attention to your wonderful comment

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#63
Thanks for the illuminating equation Joseph Sprute

Alan Culler

Alan Culler

4 years ago #53

#50
(Continued) Ran long Ali -here's the rest Over the course of several times running the exercise over many different clients -in 90 minutes, Blazer always wins, Balance is second and coming on very strong in the final minutes as soon as they've agreed their work rules and roles by consensus. Brigadier was always last. They had strikes, workers and leaders quit, sabotage and sometimes we had to do damage control for the participants who took the exercise much too seriously. The Harvard experiment, ran for 6 weeks using thrice weekly 60 minute class periods and 2 hour planning and innovation sessions. Our entire exercise took 4 or six hours. The four hour session included a 20 minute climate lecturette, which described the original experiment. Data was collected pre- during and post on a 20 question version of the OCS. (Alas tabulated by hand, -- it was the 80's -which the session and lecturette was proceeding. Then the exercise was debriefed. The six hour version allowed participants to create their own climate and work rules and compete for a 60 minute production session with debrief following. Usually participants created something like the Blazer or Balance Climate and results were always much closer. Thanks for your question and I apologize for takin you so far down memory lane. If you want the full description of the 1967 experiment see: https://www.amazon.com/Motivation-Organizational-Climate-George-Litwin/dp/087584071X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1483585052&sr=8-1&keywords=Motivation+and+Organizational+Climate

Alan Culler

Alan Culler

4 years ago #52

#50
Hello Ali Thanks for your comments and support. With regard to the Climate Lab - unfortunately it is not available to the public. I wrote the simulation as part of a training program for British Airways during the turnaround leading up to privatization. At the time I worked for HRI, George Litwin's company, which retained copyright. The exercise simulated three climates for the three companies, Brigadier, Balance, and Blazer. (We changed "British" the original company name from the 1967 Litwin -Stringer Harvard Experiment to Brigadier out of concern that British Airways leaders might be offended by the name. Each company "manufactured 3 complex products (Paper airplanes) for a 90 minute. The climates were set by six minutes of video by the "CEO" of each company. Like the original experiment the climates setting oration and work rules were set based upon Dr. David McClelland's three motive needs. Brigadier was Power-driven, Balance was Affiliation-driven, and Blazer was Achievement-driven. I wrote the scripts and supervised production of the video that was shot buy Georges son Ron Litwin.

Alan Culler

Alan Culler

4 years ago #51

#53
Harvey Lloyd Makes sense to me that climate changes must fit with cultural values -organization success is often a matter of alignment to deliver value, but also knowing when to break set and change.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

Thank you Mohammed Sultan to add their comments. I enjoyed this comment and it deserves greater attention.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#59
Thank you Joseph. I am still overwhelmed by your comments trying to explore their depth

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#57
I too find your comment fascinating Joseph Sprute not only because it is different than all previous comments, but mainly because of what you concluded it "since at this point, holding an umbrella is more likely than holding gold or silver". You hold the umbrella and it is made of gold. I thank you for sharing the buzz and for truly giving me a new perspective.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#53
Yes, I agree Harvey Lloyd. In fact, both climate and culture affect each other eventually.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#52
Interesting point of vies thi is that culture is inspired. How does tis fit with opinions that culture is the resultant of individual interactions producing behavioral patterns over long times dear Mohammed Sultan?

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#51
I tag Alan Culler. You have a vivid imagination and your metaphor is the proof. I look forward to what Alan would comment with anticipation.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #44

#48
Would i be incorrect in stating that we may introduce climate change but it must align with our values/culture? If we introduce climate change that is against our values/culture that this would eventually impact the culture? I wanted to ask the question both ways as i sense they may need a different answer. Thanks for your comments they separated some things under different definitions for me.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#48
Happy new year to you as well dear Alan Culler. Your comment filled me with positive curiosity "With just 6 minutes of video - a speech by the leaders of three companies "British, Balance, and Blazer" we created three distinct climates with remarkably different performance". This is a remarkable result. I wonder if this video is available to the public! It must be a hit. If available, would you kindly provide a link? Yes, there is a lot of confusion about culture and climate. Many researches discussed climate when culture when they actually discussed climate. I am glad that you referred to Dr. Ed Schein. I love this model of artifacts, espoused values and shared tacit assumptions. I might be referring to it in my next buzz. Your writing is spot on "Leaders I have seen accomplish this by having contacts at all levels to act as a bellweather- "Management by walking around" in the words of Peters and Waterman:. Thak you Alan again for contributing such a great comment.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#47
I shall call you dear Harvey Lloyd "The Father of Eloquent Simplicity". You amaze me with your wisdom packed in simple, yet deep meaning. This is a quote from your comment to reflect on this ability of yours "A leader must also take all available resources and paint a futuristic picture to lead".

Alan Culler

Alan Culler

4 years ago #41

Happy New Year, Ali. Thanks for posting this exploration of organizational climate and culture. I worked behind George Litwin for 10 years and attended George's 80th birthday in August. I continue with climate and culture work to this day. There is a lot of misunderstanding about climate and culture -they are not synonymous. Climate is relative short term in that it can be changed quickly through management practices. In 1986 I wrote a training exercise that recreated the 1967 Litwin Stringer experiment. With just 6 minutes of video - a speech by the leaders of three companies "British, Balance, and Blazer" we created three distinct climates with remarkably different performance. Cumulative climate may evolve into behavioral norms. Culture is defined By Dr. Ed Schein as Underlying values and assumptions, beliefs and behavioral norms, and individual behaviors and physical representations of norms. Ed Schein usually described this as a pyramid or an iceberg with the values on the bottom and the individual behaviors on top -the easiest to change. I love your premise of an instantaneous signal like the weather umbrella or stand for when it is working. Leaders I have seen accomplish this by having contacts at all levels to act as a bellweather- "Management by walking around" in the words of Peters and Waterman. This may be a good use for social media -internal to the company -or perhaps to include customers, suppliers and other stakeholders. As long as we remember that "the map is not the territory" -still needs human contact. A always, you jump-start my brain. Thank you! Alan

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #40

#44
We are human. We face the same issues in leadership. How can explain an idea....thought...perception that would motivate a group to see what i see? Without using guilt, fear or creating anxiety that blocks the individual from experiencing the richness of the concept presented. Such is the life and the need for metaphors in a leader's life. I often consider the "scouting party" of old. The group or person that went forward ahead of everyone else and they would need to describe to the rest of the group what they had seen and experienced. Taking visual information and putting it into words is a leadership skill that is constantly being honed. How could Lewis and Clark have explained the grand canyon to someone? Columbus the Americas? The information from the scouting party was used to make risk filled choices. A leader must also take all available resources and paint a futuristic picture to lead. This is why we typically cross paths so much within ideas. We both must lead (Scout) and return with communications that inspires others to come through what we have seen. We may not share professions but the issues of leadership are universal. Looking forward to your post Ali Anani.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#45
Mohammed Sultan- you touched upon one idea that I am going to discuss.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#43
Thank you dear Harvey Lloyd for your remarkable suggestion. The river metaphor the way you described it makes lot of sense to me. I shall surely consider it. I have done some research on the smell metaphor and some exciting ideas floated on the surface of the river. It is amazing how people think about the same idea. Nothing we think of nobody has not thought of it.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #37

#42
The smell idea is a good metaphor Ali Anani but maybe the river would offer a different more functional perspective. When we observe things our subconscious is full of the technical wisdom we have obtained over several years. This is the canoe with which we float. The river is the flow of the organization where all the culture is applying itself together. There is no scenery around, no rocks, trees, animals or sounds. During your observation allow the focus groups, processes and people to place the scenery in the landscape for you. When you dock you now have a complete picture and can see the rapids created by boulders, trees that stretch out across certain aspects of the river, wildlife and their places of refuge. Predisposition is the bane of observation. When we walk in with an opinion our sub conscious wants us to be right, so it applies filters that only allow facts that support through. I usually get pretty smelly when i sense observations are being form fitted into predisposition. Pavlov's famous dogs could be trained to do that.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#41
Thank you again Harvey Lloyd for contributing this timely comment. The discussions here evoked so many ideas in my mind. One idea is about "Smelly Organizations" that I am going to write soon. You really stretch my mind by your writing " I do think we sometimes enter into observation with predisposed positions". The question this brings to my attention is shall we continue with the same predisposed positions if we smell a different smell than that smell of our position? Fear, anger, stress produce smells that are different from an organization that is mint-like. If I smell mint would I still hold on to my "predisposed position" of an organization that smells like rotten eggs? I am so happy that the comments of Mohammed Sultan resonated with you. Mohammed's comments smell like mint to me.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #35

#39
This is an awesome viewpoint in reviewing corporate health during effective change. I do think we sometimes enter into observation with predisposed positions. Certainly guidelines assist us in labeling, but real feedback that is not channeled can reveal so much more. The six areas clearly label the larger issues but the devil is always in the details. Focus groups, blind observation and other open ended reviews allow us to see beyond the scope of current thinking. A gentlemen here on BeBee went to a big box retailer and actaully applied for and got a job for a few weeks. His observations were done through a blind position. Great stuff @Mohammed Sultan

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#39
Very wisely said Mohammed Sultan "Very often the factors considered are not a researcher's insight or based on academic researches,but real organizational insights:. You are spot on and this is a core issue.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#36
The six factors do serve well in our attempts to study organizational climate. Even though organizational climate is a "slipper" one, to use your words dear Mohammed Sultan, still it is worthy to see how the trend changes over time. I like the design of surveys that you outlined in your comment and you truly relate colors to the six criteria suggested to measure organizational climate. This is a worthy suggestion.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#35
I agree with you dear CityVP Manjit. Many studies have shown the inadequacy of surveys as hey pertain ore to organizational climate when the surveys intended to study organizational culture. The example of school survey that you cited is also inadequate for the reasons you highlighted in your comment. The closest surveys that may be designed to approximate an organizational climate should be based by the six criteria that were outlined by two Harvard professors.Even though organizational culture and climate feedback to each other they are different in their time. Culture is based on past interactions whereas climate is based on the present time and reflects the current mood of the organization.

CityVP Manjit

CityVP Manjit

4 years ago #31

The question of effectiveness of this approach depends on the capability of the executives one conducts a survey for, regardless whether that executive is operating from an operational lens, or a human resource lens or a strategy planning lens. The use of indicators is fairly common in organizations that are adept with utilizing visual management and even at very basic strategy levels where a VP may initiate a balanced scorecard project, whose key feature is dashboard analytics. I have heard of schools talking about climate but I have never seen an organizational climate survey. I took the liberty of tracking one down that uses Litwin & Stringer (organizational attribute) - and this one also cites Schneider and Barlett which is cited as "individual-attribute approach" http://faculty.mu.edu.sa/public/uploads/1332953058.0397pdf_APMAS%20Organisational%20Climate%20Survey%20Report.pdf What it amounts to is a voice of the employee survey. This one is a student survey but it does provide insights into the core instrument. It is far removed from the visual management system I would envisage and the report is very academic. The chief error I see in it is that climate is not one size fits all, nor is it a product of one major variable such as employee satisfaction. The criteria for Climate could be determined from Employee Voice - but that criteria is one which provides the treasure map and not where the payback is. Without finding that executive who can think at a very high level, one will more likely encounter the thunder of company politics. Even starting at the CEO requires one that can diverge and converge as the work is co-designed.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

Thank you dear Laurent Boscherini for sharing this buzz. This gives me the opportunity to wish you a joyful and productive new year.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#31
Again, this is an interesting keypoint Mohammed Sultan. You wrote "For example Nestle Foods and Ford Cars have different cultures although they may be juggling the same balls". Yes, and this is opens the idea that the juggler proficiency is important. WE may give the same balls to two jugglers but only to experience their differences in juggling them. Exactly as we give two painters the same paint, but the outcome might be markedly different.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#30
This s an interesting idea Mohammed Sultan- You refer now to key persons color to the world and the meaning of this color for employees and customers. This is a new idea and I am deeply moved by it.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#28
Thank you Harvey Lloyd for adding your timely wisdom. I have written many times on metaphors from nature how living bodies prepare for the difficult times. Trees know when to drop their leaves. Leadership is building the spirits for difficult times because no business shall have easy sailing at all times.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #26

#19
I agree with your discussion here but would add the prequal to your series of steps. Prior to the red umbrella it was blue. How did we lead in this time? Did we nurture/.prepare the cultural spirit for the red umbrella events. I find that when we enter the red umbrella stages of business we enter, regardless of cause, with people. We know the red umbrella days will come. So the strength of the culture to weather storms is a sign of good leadership before the storm. A strong corporate culture will suffer consequences during the red umbrella times. But it can survive if it was built upon a firm foundation of good leadership during the blue days.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#22
One point Sara Jacobovici that attracted my attention is your writing "And according to Frankl, the spirit can never be sick. There is always something intact, he says, even in illness, which he calls the β€˜noetic’ core of the person". i mentioned in the text of the buzz that the balls juggler should be aware of the characteristics of the ball h/s is juggling. Now, what you say the spirit remains intact. You defined one ball in a very interesting way.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #24

#22
The space is large and we can wander sometimes. But i believe you narrowed the space very intellectually. Frankl was an amazing man and i find the stool legs of Body, Mind and Spirit appropriate. If i could i would like to blow it out to encompass the corporate culture. There is a "body" of people we are referring to as the culture. The "body" has a mind that is driven by the vision of the organization and it has a "spirit" that connects all the pieces together. Leaders might look at these in reverse. The spirit is what they lead. The vision is their guide and the body is the physical plant. We have our corporate stool to rest our success on. The local wal-mart came to town many years ago. I was amazed at the service within the store. Over time the spirit of wal-mart has died. The store is now a group of folks trying to survive and not build. I can effectively say that Sam Walton took with him his spiritual leadership. Please think out loud anytime. I find thinking out loud very rewarding sometimes, especially when you are collecting thoughts.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#22
You do bring many hot and relevant points to the discussion Sara Jacobovici. I think I was right and I am witnessing a branch off dialogue that is hugely interesting. I agree with your comment and as expect to read a detailed buzz on same from you I would rather wait till you have published your buzz.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#19
By the way you are most welcome to use the umbrella metaphor for your consulting business dear Mohammed Sultan

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#19
Dear Mohammed Sultan- you enrich beautifully and professionally the meaning of colors for business. I enjoyed this part of your comment significantly. I wish you would kindly respond to the last two comments of Harvey Lloyd. I believe you concur with him that the leaders of a company hold the key. I have more to say, bt honestly would rather wait to hopefully read the response of Harvey. Now, amalgamating the main points of comments is becoming a necessity for we all have different experiences and it shall be lovely to mix all of them together. We have a recipe for a great meal for our minds.

Sara Jacobovici

Sara Jacobovici

4 years ago #20

#17
Dear Harvey Lloyd whether you gentlemen agree or not. I refer to Viktor Frankl's view of the human person as being in three dimensions: body, mind and spirit. The company is sometimes referred to as having a corporate body. Well, I think there is a parallel here with looking to identify the body, mind and spirit of the company. And according to Frankl, the spirit can never be sick. There is always something intact, he says, even in illness, which he calls the β€˜noetic’ core of the person, which can be referred back to the "mind" of the company. I apologise if I am going too far off the mark but there is a connection between emotions and references to climate conditions (emotional climate conditions, feeling on cloud nine, feeling in a fog...). If we refer back to Dr. Ali's buzz on contamination of emotions and the impact that has on a company's health.....sorry, I am starting to ramble. Thank you for the opportunity to think out loud in the comment box. As always, exciting to participate in these dynamic exchanges.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#18
A mi right to summarize your comment by saying leadership creates the culture Harvey Lloyd?

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#17
I am so happy your flow is enriching these discussions greatly Harvey Lloyd would respond, but I have a feeling this part of your comment "They may have the skill you need but they need to apply it in a way that grows the culture". Grow the culture- what a lovely green metaphor this is for leadership and culture. Great comment and as usual

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #17

#13
When i see the CEO/President or the person who is incharge i see the head of an organization whether it's three or a thousand people. When a business grows it may develop expansion departments such as HR, sales or operations. But the leader is always the one who sets the standards of the culture. A pitcher is the winner of games. We can discuss the rest of the players, but in reality the pitcher is expected to pitch a perfect game each time. The rest of the players are their to pick up when he fails. A good leader knows they are pitching. They also know that a harmonious culture will insure the rest of the team is their for his/her failures as represented by the 1st base hit. Striving for the perfect game is always there, a well developed culture (Team) through leadership always wins the game. The umbrella i submit always lies with the pitcher/leader.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #16

#12
I believe Sara Jacobovici introduced the third leg to this stool we prepare to sit on. The culture that enters the door of your establishment is not the leader but rather the organization. Leaders making poor choices in the marketplace is sometimes the flip of a coin. When a leader sets an expectation of performance that only they can achieve from their experience and background then the culture will die along with the roots. The culture is made up of many walks of different life narratives. They may have the skill you need but they need to apply it in a way that grows the culture. This discussion reminds me of the metaphor of the Mystro. He or she is not looking for your skill but rather your passion to mess with the rest of the ensemble so the ears of the listeners are intrigued. Leadership is an art form and is the holy grail of understanding life. We lead as friends, siblings, parents and as professionals. The journey of leadership is a very humbling experience. Sometimes we get it right and the umbrella is a kaleidoscope of harmonious colors. Most important is we are leaders of ourselves.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#13
Amazing is your comment with its great sense dear Glenn Melcher. I agree with you completely. SHort-sighted management focuses on operations and these may get people blind to other possibilities and shrinks their opportunity to learn and evolve. "Great organizations know there success is a direct result of their people.. ". Only if organizations would appreciate the wisdom embedded in your words. You mentioned that HR is the umbrella and Harvey Lloyd suggested the leadership as the umbrella. Two great ideas to ponder on.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#12
Dear Sara Jacobovici may be combined to offer new perspectives on business. I am trying to do that. Thank you for illuminating my mind with your great comment.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#11
Harvey Lloyd- it is great to exchange comments with you. You really feed us with many great ideas. You wrote "We can only watch the leaves and branches and make decisions for the roots based on our analysis". This is a remarkable par of your comment. I find myself asking what if the plant has aerial roots? We then have a different issue to deal with. I am inspired by a new idea. The complexity of leadership is so huge and what might appear on the surface of negligible effect for some leadership attributes might in reality be deciding ones because of their feedback effect. This is why I have seriously to think about what you wrote "Good leaders look from many perspectives at the leaves and branches, soliciting many opinions. The factors are huge. But i would rather whittle down from many perspectives to a team perspective than step into the team with my own narrow scope". This coupled with another part of your comment "A leader may sense the need for color change but has to manage the competing colors created across many aspects of the culture" provide me and the readers with new perspectives on leadership. I can't tank you enough my friend.

Glenn Melcher

Glenn Melcher

4 years ago #12

Amazing share Ali Anani.. It seems big or small the organization umbrella πŸŒ‚ holder is HR.. This entity in many organizations is tumultuous and ever changing to assist the needs of the entire entity. This is a daunting task because your dealing with people's lives and wellbeing.. There are two types of entities that can be identified here.. One will be a people focused entity the other will be operations focused.. The difference you can feel when you first walk in the door πŸšͺ.. In the battle for good people the operational centered group is losing the race 🏁.. They are trying to fix this with compensation, but for the best of the best it's not just about the money πŸ’°.. Great organizations know there success is a direct result of their people.. They are treated as partners not as a line item that can be reconstituted at the stroke of a pen...

Sara Jacobovici

Sara Jacobovici

4 years ago #11

Tremendously important and timely work Ali Anani. I appreciate the focus of this piece as one that recognizes the importance of identifying and addressing the "elements" which contribute to and influence the corporate climate. You and your readers are touching on key issues. My only contribution can be in the area of boundaries. People carry their individual/personal weather over the threshold into the company's environment. If someone comes in blowing an ill wind, it will surely influence the climate of the company. Multiply that with the number of individuals, including those in leadership capacities, and you can definitely stir up quite a storm. Many times people don't understand where it's coming from. Maybe there can be a means to transition; remove any negative elements before entering, unloading wet umbrellas or removing those wet boots, and so on. Have the company climate preset with the right balance of light and comfortable temperature; an inviting environment. A place or persons identified where some debriefing can take place throughout the day. With consistency, clear expectations and trust, the company may actually be able to control on the inside what we can't control on the outside.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #10

#10
Happy new year and may blessings of health and happiness fill everyday. I believe we must look upon this as we would fluid dynamics. I do agree with your comments and it reminded me of Steven Covey discussing the fact that we can't pull the tree up by its roots and see how they are doing. We can only watch the leaves and branches and make decisions for the roots based on our analysis. This being the case we are left with a simple review within the dynamics of our own understanding. Good leaders look from many perspectives at the leaves and branches, soliciting many opinions. The factors are huge. But i would rather whittle down from many perspectives to a team perspective than step into the team with my own narrow scope. Blackberry failed because they were ahead of their time. They saw security as the issue Apple saw freedom. Freedom of millions of users interfacing without concern of security or policing. We now have cyber bullying, fake news and a system where by wrongdoers can plot without detection. Maybe blackberry was right? Time will answer this question more completely. The holy grail of leadership is service. We should serve our organization in a win win capacity. Employees have to win. Culturally they have to see that you are trying to build a model that creates opportunities for them to win. Should they take the opportunity. If they don't then they will have to live within their own consequence window. Trust is a huge word. Leaders have to develop trust relationships across competing influences. A leader may sense the need for color change but has to manage the competing colors created across many aspects of the culture. My hope here is describe the holy grail of balance and that a specific color may show good or bad leadership, it also indicates the complexity of change.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#8
First- I wish you a happy new year my friend Harvey Lloyd. "The umbrella API/device is the leader of the organization. A human". This is an interesting idea. I have just responded in my previous comment to a comment by dear debasish majumder and I wonder if you would agree. Yes, the number of factors to follow are huge. I believe we need to select the very critical ones. Organizational success depend on many factors and yet there is common understanding that the triad of leadership, culture and structure are key ones. So, you highlight the value of leaders in making small changes that eventually may lead to changing the corporate culture. Now, if the human umbrella,, the leader, we have a hugely inadequate pillar and the organization shall fall. Is there a way to make the umbrella worthy by trusting the colors it shows? If the umbrella is malfunctioning then what can we do? I am sure a feeling of distrust shall prevail and the mood of the organization shall be in the red zone. You got me thinking loudly.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#3
debasish majumder- thank you my dear friend for your comment. The monitoring system for organizations doesn't need a satellite. We need key factors to be measured constantly so that if a cause appears it shall be dealt with promptly. I believe that we need very creative ideas to measure few parameters to follow and introduce an index for us to follow. When Kodak company focused on its core business they were left behind. Blackberry is another example. Failing to respond to change shows that rigidity was part of their structure. How come two great companies "passed away" because of lack to respond to the disruptive new technologies. The problem was in-house in both cases. Sticking to old successes built a culture of doing what they they did irrespective of changes outside their businesses. The umbrella showed sometimes the red light, but it was ignored. The question is how to stop such failures from being repeated by other firms. Do you agree?

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

4 years ago #7

Ali Anani you seek the holy grail of leadership. When we look at leadership in an organization we can forecast very easily the color. Great leaders see these colors. Successful leaders seek to change the color. The umbrella API/device is the leader of the organization. A human. Like the "weather" corporate culture has many variables that are difficult to incorporate into our leadership. But "climate" millions of tiny variables collected over time and processed in our mind can show us how to change the weather to produce different climate. In your six different variables, i would imagine, that their are 20-30 smaller variables under each one of those. Amazingly a leader may not be able to recite the words but can see the "Occupational Culture". Seeing and acting on is two very different things. In today's very highly regulated world the ability to act is constrained by your ability to stay within regulations both real and perceived. Those within the occupation must interpret what you are acting on as positive for them. This is not always the case. The feedback loop is typically through torts or social discourse either internal or external. So the loop itself has become problematic within the leader's ability to act on the climate. This reflects back to many of your earlier discussions about nature and how it should demonstrate the ebb and flow of this very same topic. When OCS is performed are we seeing a natural ebb and flow or is it an amalgamation of regulation, and mazes designed to meet the same? Great discussion.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#6
Yes, I agree. This issue of manipulation has been with us for ages. It is the painter not the paint.

Devesh 🐝 Bhatt

Devesh 🐝 Bhatt

4 years ago #5

#5
you always get me thinking... The comparatives ..how they can distil into utility. Your intentions is good , the only factor is how a diabolical manager may scale it in an undesirable manner...the balance of power so to speak... Empowering both parties..employer and employee...its a critical factor for global understanding and replication.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#4
" But in case of the business body the remedies are antibiotics, painkillers and possible amputation..not body recovery -- its a highly political and competitive environment". My idea is to have early indicators so that the main business body remains healthy and not in need of antibiotics and other drugs. As for your question "A question which emerges is , how to correlate culture, motivators, response in a simple manner"? My answer is this is worthy to ponder on. Culture emerges from the past. Motivation reflects a present mood. You got me thinking.

Devesh 🐝 Bhatt

Devesh 🐝 Bhatt

4 years ago #3

yes, for business health yes... But in case of the business body the remedies are antibiotics, painkillers and possible amputation..not body recovery -- its a highly political and competitive environment. The weather comparative was better cause we cannot control the weather yet. Cultural is the motivator which keeps one going when the company isn't sitting on the next big idea which requires people to standup... Culture is the intangible that ads to the salary and status...so the objective is motivation... Now if the indicators were changed from interactions to value system based motivators and impact, it allows for flexibility and a non competitive quantification ...let's keep the competition to line functions , its a business not the training ground for a cult. A question which emerges is , how to corelate culture, motivators, response in a simple manner.

Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

#1
Devesh Bhatt- As usual, an entertaining and deep comment. Culture is an emerging property. It emerges from the interactions of humans. Being emergent, it can't be planned. The simple rules of interactions among individuals feedback to each other and the complexity of interactions lead to the complexity of culture. If people follow simple rules of good and productive interactions a healthy culture emerges. So, we may be able to study the interactions as they are easier to follow. I wrote a presentation about the simple measures of businesses and advocated for simple ones. For example, the human body is so complex, but by examining the breath rate, blood pressure and body temperature we might tell a lot about the healthiness of a human. Can we do the same for the business body?

Devesh 🐝 Bhatt

Devesh 🐝 Bhatt

4 years ago #1

Color coding if cultural responses, it would represent the general mood and not the disruptive mood, more importantly is the disruption beneficial..after all its not utility but an open ended precursor to it. Also I've seen kitchens where the entire grumpy staff is efficient and infra companies where the entire grumpy staff is inefficient. Mood is same, notions are the same..just the triggers are different which yield different outcomes. Personally, I think culture should not be moulded for classification and individual response, simply because culture is to be given to the employee, not imposed on him...a lesson from societal cultural conditioning most common in India and China.

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