Although it has always existed, it was just since some years ago that the concept of corporative culture has become more popular.
There are many ways to define it. One of them that I like pretty much, comes from one of the founders of NETFLIX (we will quote him several times). He describes it as that for which you hire, promote and/or someone.
The classic way to talk about corporate culture is to describe it as the set of values and behaviors that uniquely define the environment and performance of each organization or company.
“Culture devoures corporate strategy for breakfast”. That is what the mythical Peter Drucker said, one of the first ones to reflect on these things. No matter how much corporate strategy there is, no matter how much market and/or product there is… if the company does not develop a set of values and attitudes that lay the foundation, sooner or later the problems and the brakes to growth will begin.
Culture is born from above. It is the direction who promotes it.
A simple example is that it is not the same to hire mediocre people and tell them what to do constantly, than to surround ourselves with brilliant people with whom we can share a goal and they can lead the way.
This is a topic that we are passionate and care about. So much so, that we have developed a tool to help us to manage it. Especially in times of pandemic remote working. We have called it https://nubii.us and we will be soon talking more about it.
Let’s talk about attitude and aptitude to identify different profiles. Let’s talk about people you work with, surround yourself with or hire. Let’s simplify and suppose that we work with binary states. Ones and zeros. And let’s represent if they have (with 1) or if they don’t have (in this case with 0).
People with 0 attitude and 0 aptitude. In this case we have to understand what has happened and how a profile of this type could have gotten there or been hired. In this case, the human resources department or those responsible for hiring have definitely put their foot in it. These profiles should have been identified and filtered previously.
1 attitude, 0 aptitude. Wait and help him to acquires what he needs to achieve the skills that are required based on experience, work and/or study. Define a considerable time frame and give him a try.
1-attitude, 1-aptitude. Fantastic. Take care of that resource as the best you have. Learn and take advantage of everything he can provide. The quality of the projects is usually the result of the team that develops it and this is a profile to take care of and protect.
0-attitude, 1-aptitude. And here it is our protagonist. They are definitely the most complicated ones. We have to get rid of them immediately and get them away from the team as soon and as far as possible. However, it is very very complicated to do because: they are brilliant. We will try to extend the deadlines, but time and experience will teach us that the end is always the same. He ends up being expelled from the group but that happens already very late.
One of the founders of NETFLIX, Reed Hastings, defines the 0-Attitude, 1-Attitude profile as “brilliant jerk”. He argues that creating a good team and a great collaborative work environment is too important and expensive. And of course, this kind of profile put it in risk, because although they are absolutely brilliant, they are unable to share their capabilities and put them at the service of a team and/or even respect those who don’t think or are like them. And normally, they are right or they are the ones who show more capacity at their position. However, the risk of maintaining them is too high because it can also mean to lose the rest of the team.
It is true that remote working helps those who are 0-Attitude, 1-Attitude. Remote interaction and some teleworking relationship models make it difficult to detect them (this is one of the reasons why we decided to work with nubii.us but we must activate some mechanisms that make it possible.
Back to Netflix’s methodology, some of its strategies to identify this and other types of harmful profiles for the team are quite popular. There is one that I especially like because the approach is completely “positive”. It’s about asking individually all members of the company to identify three people without whom it would be very complicated to do their job. The idea is actually to identify those who are less needed globally, to work on them in a concrete way. All this must be circumscribed in an industry and a labor market with a very high rotation.
Corporate culture is the secret weapon of many successful organizations. It comes from the management team itself and is a very specific hallmark of each group.