When Times Get Tough, Will Culture Make or Break the Company?

August 31st, 2016   •   no comments   

Those that join the military learn quickly about unit discipline.  All of the toughness and craziness of basic training is designed to get soldiers to respond to certain situations that the drill instructors know they will face, and to respond in a disciplined, planned manner. In business, employees do not get that sort of training.  So when the wheels start coming off the wagon, how will they respond?

Aug 31_2016_make or breakQuestions to consider:

  • When costs rise or margins are cut, bringing profits down, how does leadership respond? Are values ignored to chase the next big sale? Or to make the next big cut in expenses?
  • Are behaviors toward customers in keeping with company values? Would a cut in customer service staff erode the customer loyalty built up over the years, so that the cut in expenses would actually result in a decrease of sales?
  • If a company has been big on employee development, reward and appreciation, but has to cut out certain programs, will they just forget about them, or will they find another way to show that appreciation?
  • Will employees break “unit discipline” to bolster their sales numbers, or take shortcuts in service or production?
  • Does the company discuss the importance of maintaining the culture in the face of tough times, no matter what? Are the consequences of difficulties cause the culture and values to be diluted or abandoned and a survival mode of  “anything goes” sets in?

Tough questions. How would your organization answer them? Any thoughts you might have?

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