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What organizational practices do you use (un)successfully to improve culture?

by Chi1 min read14th Aug 20203 comments


Org Strategy
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Lately, I've been trying to think more about and dig into how to build great organizational culture. I've been wondering if the people here have any best practices they implement or witnessed that they found helpful.

I only found this post by Michelle Hutchinson and this post by Stefan Torges with a very quick EA forum search which I both found useful. Next to concrete suggestions, they talk about things like 'psychological safety', 'being open to feedback', 'knowing other people's limits'. I also see update posts every now and then indicating changes in cultures (e.g. CEA's recent update mentioning their culture improving.) While I'm also interested in that, I'd be most interested in what concrete behaviors (processes, institutions) people actually have had success with to create these things. (And which were less successful)

An example from Bridgewater (so I read) for example is "To foster transparency, we record every meeting and ping people if we talked about them in a meeting, so they can watch the recording". A hypothetical example might be "Every Monday, we match employees for 1-1s" or "We took a day and wrote down organizational values and operationalized them into the following behavioral principles" and it had these and these positive/negative/non-existent effects.

Thanks :)

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3 Answers

This question is interesting to me too. 

Cop out "answer": It might be worth browsing posts tagged Org Strategy, if you hadn't already. Not all of them will be relevant to organisational culture, but I imagine some will. Likely example: Countering imposter syndrome.

(Also, if you come across other posts that are relevant, please give them that tag too!)

I'm not sure that the same set of behaviors/processes will be best for all organizations. At ACE, we did a "culture survey" (~staff morale survey, but broader) and got specific feedback about potential areas for improvement.