Dad of Divas' Reviews: Book Review - The Culture Engine

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Book Review - The Culture Engine

The Culture Engine
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About the Book
An organizational "North Star," codifying valued behaviors for optimal performance
The Culture Engine shows leaders how to create a high performing, values aligned culture through the creation of an organizational constitution. With practical step-by-step guidance, readers learn how to define their organization's culture, delineate the behaviors that contribute to greater performance and greater engagement, and draft a document that codifies those behaviors into a constitution that guides behavior towards an ideal: a safe, inspiring workplace. The discussion focuses on people, including who should be involved at the outset and how to engage employees from start to finish, while examples of effective constitutions provide guidance toward drafting a document that can actualize an organization's potential.

Culture drives everything that happens in an organization day to day, including focus, priorities, and the treatment of employees and customers. A great culture drives great performance, and can help attract and retain great talent. But a great culture isn't something that evolves naturally. The Culture Engine is a guide to strategically planning a culture by compiling the company's guiding principles and behaviors into an organizational constitution.
  • Decide which behaviors and attitudes are desired in the organization
  • Secure leader commitment to planning, drafting, and implementing the document
  • Learn the most effective way to socialize the draft statement and get everyone on board
  • Model desired behaviors to boost employee engagement throughout the process

Organizational culture is not an amorphous thing – it comes down from the top, inspired and exemplified by the leadership. It can steer a company up or down, keep it on mission or force it off-course. For an organization to fulfill its potential, the culture must be on-point, truly reflecting the heart of the company from leaders to team members across the company. The Culture Engine helps leaders define the playing field, pushing performance to the next level.

My Take on the Book
I have been a part of organizations that have gone through great change in a short time which ultimately changes the overall culture of the institution in general. At times these organizations dealt with it well, while at other times, they did not. The ones that did flourished, while others that held back languished. This book takes on this type of event, or really any organization that wants to work on making systematic change to their overall culture in general. I loved the idea of the organizational constitution. I had never really thought about this before, but it made a lot of sense and in the end I think it would be a great addition to any organization. The author of this book made the book easy to read and easy to incorporate into any organization. I appreciated the structure of the book which made the book flow well and the book is set up much like a workbook with many things that you can do or copy and use for the benefit of your own organization. All-in-all this was a great book that I would recommend all leaders to read!

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