Get curious in 4 areas to create a thriving culture

Get curious in 4 areas to create a thriving culture | practice | Is your company wobbly? Why strict alignment matters
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November 20, 2023
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Leading the Way
Get curious in 4 areas to create a thriving culture
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Avoid creating a stagnant company culture by getting curious about your team, your customers, your role and how industry trends may require your culture to change, writes John Coleman, the author of the "HBR Guide to Crafting Your Purpose." "Great leaders learn to be thoughtfully attuned to those shifts, curious about the reason and the results of such changes, and open-minded about the need to evolve themselves or their organizations in more substantive ways," Coleman writes.
Full Story: Harvard Business Review (tiered subscription model) (11/17) 
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Put it into practice: Culture can't be static, so it's up to leaders to get curious about how changes in their industry may require cultural adjustments to retain employees and customers, Coleman writes. "There's no one right answer for how or how often to consciously revisit an organization's key cultural artifacts, like its mission, vision, and values, but culture is always and at all times shifting."
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SmartBrief on Leadership
Is your company wobbly? Why strict alignment matters
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Alignment holds several benefits for companies, and it's underpinned by your team and strategy, leadership consultant and author Paul Thornton writes. Thornton explains possible misalignments and the role of senior leaders in achieving both horizontal and vertical alignment.
Full Story: SmartBrief/Leadership (11/17) 
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Put it into practice: Come up with an overarching question that will keep your team aligned, Thornton advises. Also, discuss company values and work promptly to fix any misalignments that crop up.
Smarter Communication
An increasingly polarizing presidential race and hot-button issues foretell volatile office political conversations and the potential for a repeat of reduced worker productivity found in a 2020 Gartner survey. Now is the time to revisit company policies, enforce tolerance and refresh workers' skill at redirecting conversations, say business leaders, psychologists and legal experts.
Full Story: Success online (11/16) 
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Put it into practice: Consider telling workers to avoid political talk until after hours, or create a no-politics-allowed space where workers can decompress and destress. Remind colleagues about company values for respecting all people and having positive conversations, not negative ones, experts say. Create a similar atmosphere during discussions of company strategies that may change depending on the winner.
Smarter Strategy
Smarter Working
A weekly spotlight on doing more without working longer
The key to increasing productivity is not better time management or other techniques -- instead a two-way trust between team members and leaders is the main ingredient, writes Brian Elliott. Build trust by being transparent, sharing knowledge, encouraging team members to ask for help and setting clear goals and outcomes, Elliot recommends.
Full Story: Charter (11/14) 
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Daily Diversion
Why has this group read the same book for 28 years?
(Pixabay)
Can you imagine reading the same book over and over ... for 28 years ... all because you still haven't understood what it's about? That's what a group in California has been doing all these years as they tackle, again and again, James Joyce's 1939 book "Finnegan's Wake." Gerry Fialka, who founded the club in 1995, says reading the book numerous times isn't really starting over since "the book ends mid-sentence on page 628, and then it picks up at the beginning."
Full Story: KCRW-FM (Santa Monica, Calif.) (11/14) 
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SmartBreak: Question of the Day
November is National Native American Heritage Month. The National Congress of American Indians site says there are how many federally recognized Indian Nations in the US (including Alaska)?
Vote15
Vote150
Vote338
Vote574
About The Editor
Candace Chellew
Candace Chellew
Chellew
Developing a culture of trust, where your employees feel safe expressing their thoughts and opinions, seems to be the theme of today's brief. All the advice seems to dovetail together -- getting curious about your team's and customers' needs, ensuring alignment within your organization and creating a safe space for discussing sensitive topics.

At the heart of it all is trust. Building and maintaining trust within teams and between leaders is vital to creating a resilient company culture, no matter the challenges.

How are you building a culture of trust in your organization? Share your strategies with us.

If this newsletter helps you, please tell your colleagues, friends or anyone who can benefit. Forward them this email, or send this link.

What topics do you see in your daily work that I should know about? Do you have praise? Criticism? Drop me a note. And don't forget to send me photos of your pets, your office and where you spend your time off.
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Anyone who ever gave you confidence, you owe them a lot.
Truman Capote,
writer, screenwriter, playwright
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