Why Your Why Is Not Enough

Your business is your culture.
Your culture is your business.

Can’t convince yourself that they are one and the same? Think it’s time to stop reading because this is just another quip about the importance of culture? Force yourself to read on.

Frankly, we need new words for “corporate culture” because leaders who are losing (and losing their people) see culture as a concept that is secondary to their business. They don’t realize that the reason they have an attrition problem is that they continue to put business first and their people second. Many C-Suites feel if they just move more of their product that more of their people will be moved to stay—and that’s the fallacy.

Your people are not machines.

More so, building a healthy culture is not about having a foosball or ping pong table. Building a healthy culture is not about free lunches or remote work. Building a healthy culture is not about four-day workweeks.

Building a healthy culture is about uniting your workforce over a single, clear, and shared purpose.

If you think your “why” statement is a-nice-to-have vs a-need-to-have, I’m talking to you. If you think just having a “why” statement is enough, then I’m talking to you. If your “why” statement isn’t woven into the products of your business, I’m talking to you.

Don’t believe me?
Have the courage to ask your workforce.

Create a “Future Forward” Task Force.
Fill it with 6-10 of your people who care.
Have all levels of the organization covered.
Make sure they have permission to speak freely.
(But be wary: they may be afraid to share.)

Have them answer and report back on the following four questions:
1) Do we have a clear and memorable “why” statement?
2) Does everyone across the organization buy into it?
3) Can all across the organization recite it?
4) Is it truly operationalized across all facets of our business (products included)?

If the answer is “yes”, you are way ahead of others.
If the answer is “no”, feel free to reach out now.


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