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Culture Performance Management Helps Solve Organizational Challenges at the Root Level: Leadership

Culture Performance Management gives you the ability to measure the performance of your leadership not just against daily shift-wise KPIs but at their cultural connectedness level. So let’s break that down.

Improving any system or process requires real-time, detailed measurement and analysis of each underlying component. If, for example, you want to improve the performance of an engine, you would first put it on a dynamometer or “dyno” for short, a device for simultaneously measuring the torque and rotational speed (RPM) of an engine or motor, to assess its current state of performance.

Any improvement, however, will come from evaluating each component or system of parts that affect performance, determining how they’re impacting overall output goals, and working to improve them through outright replacement with higher-performing parts or by tuning them to stretch as much performance out of them as possible. First, however, to improve the component, you must measure its current specifications and performance down to the micrometer. But how do you do that with the most critical element of your organization—your people?

Your workforce is the most vital part of any system or process in your organization

Their acceptance or rejection of work conditions and expectations may go unspoken, but the effect impacts performance nonetheless. And just like any system or process, understanding the underlying condition and state of each part, each person, is critical to its current performance and the chance of any future improvement.

If what we’ve endured through the pandemic has taught us anything in business, it’s this: people aren’t as easily replaceable as organizations once thought. We’ve learned the value of each other, our people. In 2021, over 47 million people left the workforce in the United States. And although the manufacturing sector was among the least impacted by the “Great Resignation,” it left its mark (and continues to do so) throughout all manner of businesses and the supply chain.

Through early retirement, those people who left the workforce took valuable, sometimes irreplaceable knowledge, skills, and insights hewed over a lifelong career with them. But a vast majority left because they felt no value in their daily work endeavors. They felt disconnected from their workplace culture (if there was even a culture to speak of) and a lack of appreciation from the organization’s leadership. Those conditions made deciding to leave easy—even if what was next was unknown. Unlike crises of the past in our country that pulled people and teams together, this one blew them apart.

Now, we’re beginning to rebuild our organizations

It may be a long process and require business leaders to reflect on what’s important. For example, many organizations are examining the health of their company cultures to more effectively attract and retain the talented employees they need for the future. But how can you get an accurate read on workplace culture and begin to understand the impact of organizational culture on employee performance?

Employee engagement surveys have been the favored tool, but if they worked well, how did they miss so many people willing to leave the workforce with no real plan—a massive disengagement? Is there a better way to measure company culture to improve it? Is there a way to “dyno” tune workplace culture? We believe there is: Culture Performance Management.

According to the book by Randall Powers and Dr. Donte Vaughn, DM, MSM, From Culture to Culture: The System to Define, Measure, and Improve Your Company Culture, Culture Performance Management (CPM) is a proprietary methodology and refers to the “system for aligning an organization’s core company values with specific and actionable leadership behaviors that can be practiced, evaluated, and measured in real-time in order to drive immediate improvement in how leaders engage, interact, and make decisions.” The ultimate objective of CPM is to foster short-interval and continuous improvement of one’s company culture. In other words, CPM delivers an immediate and sustainable improvement of your company culture.

Culture Performance Management gives you the ability to measure the performance of your leadership not just against daily shift-wise output KPIs but at their cultural connectedness level. So let’s break that down. First, do they know and understand your mission, vision, and values? Second, do they know how those often-abstract concepts translate directly into their daily activities, interactions, and behaviors? Third, do they understand the importance of their contribution to the company’s culture and how that impacts their performance and the people they manage or supervise? Finally, this concept is most important: does your leadership know how to embody your values as they interact with the workforce? Do they “walk the walk,” so to speak?

That’s why Culture Performance Management begins at the top

CPM starts at the organization’s leadership level instead of at the employee level, inverting the typical way culture and engagement are measured in an enterprise. By examining, measuring, and training how leadership embodies or “lives out” your values, you can begin to exercise control over your culture to improve it. As is often said, you must first measure what is to be managed.

Over the next few weeks, we will get into the seven pillars of Culture Performance Management: how to select, define, connect, learn, practice, measure, and refine your company culture. Each step in the process uncovers how to fine-tune your culture and harmonize it with your values and purpose, leading to rapid and sustainable improvement: boosting short-interval and long-term performance metrics. If you’d like to dig in further and read real-world examples of how optimizing company culture starting at the leadership level leads to increased performance, we have a library of case studies that can attest to it. The “dyno” tuner works.

But we’re also very excited by CPM’s impact on higher-level, more global organizational objectives such as marketplace agility, adaptability, speed, brand integrity, and increasing competitive advantage. CPM also provides an invaluable strategic advantage in employee acquisition and retention and improves adherence to ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) standards. Attracting and keeping the best talent, the people that will lead your organization to the next level requires a thriving company culture. Just like your brand, your company culture is a valuable asset. An organization tuned to peak performance by optimizing and then operationalizing its company culture is better positioned to compete in today’s global marketplace. And it all begins with leadership.

The POWERS Difference

POWERS is a management consulting firm whose proven Culture Performance Management™ methodology connects the dots between optimized company culture and desired operational performance outcomes.

Our team has helped executive leadership across many industry verticals operationalize their culture for rapid and sustained performance improvement, increased competitive advantage, greater value, and a stronger bottom line.

To put our experienced team and proven track record to work for you, schedule an initial discovery and analysis by calling +1 678-971-4711, or emailing us at info@thepowerscompany.com.

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About the Author

Sean Hart, CEO, POWERS Management Consulting

Sean Hart

CEO, Managing Partner

Sean Hart is an industrial engineer with a background in manufacturing supervision and project management. Sean’s background is in improving overall plant efficiencies and implementing Lean techniques to improve processes.