Wondering what to do about your languishing leadership culture? In their new book, "Transforming Your Leadership Culture," Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) faculty members John B. McGuire and Gary B. Rhodes offer a possible solution: Don't get stuck on changing an organization's systems. Focus instead on your people and your culture.
McGuire and Rhodes explore the role leadership culture—the beliefs and behaviors organizations display daily—plays in organizational engagement and growth in complex times.
"When leaders take on and follow through on cultural transformation alongside their strategic and operational changes, they consistently succeed in reaching performance goals," says McGuire, a senior faculty member at CCL. "They often just need help knowing how to change the culture."
The authors share examples and stories based on their experiences working with businesses, executives, and employees. They also include case studies on change efforts that worked and those that failed, and highlight the reasons for those outcomes.
The book explores three new, core concepts for enacting change leadership:
1. Change work starts at the top: Executives can't delegate transformation to others. Without leading first by engagement and example, success is unlikely. Culture change is first a personal process; by investing themselves in it, executives become instruments of change.
2. Change comes when beliefs change: Altering organizational structures and systems is not enough. Deeply held beliefs also need to change; they drive decisions and behavior and are the source of new and better leadership practices. Successful change starts with beliefs of the senior leadership culture and spreads into the middle of the organization. From there, momentum builds as successive levels of employees buy into change.
3. Effective change creates bigger minds: Turbulence, complexity, and ambiguity characterize the new world order. Thriving in it requires bigger minds—ones that are open to more than one right answer, value collaboration, and create room for colleagues to experiment and grow.