Can you truly change a culture? Ruth Lund of the LEGACY Center and Robert Glazer, bestselling author of Friday Forward, discuss whether or not culture evolution is possible when a company begins to outgrow its core values.


Hosts & Guests

Robert Glazer

Meghan Lynch

Ruth Lund

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There are times in a business lifecycle when gaps start to appear between where an organization is and where it is headed.

Glazer points out that most organizations know their vision when they start, because oftentimes the founder is trying to do something specific. It’s difficult to truly develop the core values of that organization until you have at least 10 people and you can identify what values your best people reflect.

When it comes to articulating your core values, Glazer says, “They shouldn’t be aspirational and they shouldn’t be table stakes, like integrity or stuff like that. Where, because you wouldn’t hire someone who has integrity. They’re trying, they’re trying to represent that differentiated point of DNA.”

Oftentimes, the core values of an organization do not change as they grow and scale, even when their goals and tactics do. For example, if a company is doubling every two years, the CEO might need to change behaviors, systems, and goals to adapt to that change, but it is likely that the company values will not change. In fact, the company will grow more efficiently if it grows in service of its values instead of around its values.

But every once in a while, there might come a time when the values of a company do need to evolve through a culture evolution.

In those times, organizations will acknowledge the cultural DNA that has served them well, but also identify that they need to expand some of their values in a way that is authentic. This culture evolution will not happen often, but it can be a huge opportunity for next-level growth when there is a readiness in the organization for an authentic values stretch.