Change the Stories, Change the Culture

If an organization wants to change its culture, Peter Bregman says in his blog post for Harvard Business Review, “you have to change its stories.” In “A Good Way to Change a Corporate Culture,” Bregman discusses several key steps, starting with facing the truths you may not like and taking steps to change the reality.

Besides changing the stories, an organization can change a culture by inviting everyone’s input to craft a new values statement; I’m presuming Bergman’s implying that the core values should be re-examined and perhaps changed. Then, the core values should be illustrated with stories that describe how the values are being enacted; this will cement them as the operational values for the organization.

A change in culture often is required when companies merge. Any major differences in the way they operate and any dissonance in core values will be stumbling blocks in successfully building a stronger company–and the differences, if not addressed, may even be fatal.


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