How do your employees perform?

By Bill Kaiser, Senior Consultant Your people are the difference. Sometimes that sounds sing-songy because in many organizations it’s an inauthentic claim.  In high performing cultures – it’s gospel. How your people behave and perform, day in and day out, is the only sustainable differentiation you have. That means you have to be intentional and systematic in defining the employee behaviors that drive, and are fundamental, to your continued success. In fact, this is one of the most important premises on which the entire Fundamentals System is built – and it’s Step #1. Who should be included As HPC Founder ...

Culture: The Key to Recruiting and Retaining Top Talent

By Al Curnow, Senior Consultant  In the May 2nd  issue of our blog, my colleague, Rob Wolff, wrote an important piece on the topic of Culture as a Strategic Initiative. Given some recently announced labor statistics, I wanted to take a deeper dive on one of the elements Rob had touched on in his piece—recruiting and retaining top talent.  The U.S. Department of Labor announced last month that the unemployment rate was now down to 3.6%!  This is the lowest level since 1962.  While you may have already been feeling the sting of a tight labor market, the screws have ...

Culture as a Strategic Investment

By Rob Wolff, Senior Consultant Although the economy is, by most measures robust and healthy right now, organizations of every size continue to struggle with managing capital budgets and investment strategies. A healthy economy doesn’t always mean an abundance of available capital; therefore, businesses owners and CEO’s continue to face the challenge of deciding where the biggest impact and return is likely to come from. A recent survey of small and midsize business owners showed that Productivity Improvement, Recruiting and Retention, and Marketing are among the top areas vying for investment. This should come as no surprise, as these are ...

When’s the “Right Time” for Culture? Yesterday.

By David J. Friedman, Founder/CEO Having written two books, given more than 400 workshops, delivered scores of keynote talks, and presented to hundreds of companies, I’ve probably explained the Fundamentals System™ to more than 10,000 leaders.  In nearly every case they’ve been astonished by the simple elegance and practicality of the approach.  And yet, as simple and powerful as the approach is, they don’t all implement it.  Why? The most common explanation I hear goes something like this:  “We believe in this and it makes all the sense in the world, but we’re so swamped right now and have several ...

Closing the gap between expectations and performance

By Jake Friedman, Consultant  Last Friday afternoon I picked up my son from school and then drove a couple minutes down the road to the closest Chick-Fil-A. While perhaps not the healthiest option, our end of the week trip for ice cream or a milkshake was quickly becoming one of his favorite traditions, and I enjoyed it as well. I ordered a shake, thanked the woman taking my order, and as all Chick-Fil-A employees do when thanked, she replied, “My pleasure.” This simple two word reply is a hallmark of Chick-Fil-A’s well-earned reputation of excellent service in an industry (fast ...

Are Your People the Difference?

By Bill Kaiser, Senior Consultant I just returned from a speaking opportunity at a conference hosted by a very successful roofing material company. They gathered their top roofing contractors from around the country to celebrate and reward their performances in 2018 – specifically for buying/using a great deal of their product. The general manager of the host company started off the conference with an interesting PowerPoint presentation (I know, often an oxymoron) recapping 2018 and forecasting 2019. He discussed numbers, trends, innovative products, and his staff. He then introduced the company president to speak to the honored guests.  He gets ...
Coaching and Culture | High Performing Culture

Coaching and Culture – What We Can Learn From March Madness

By Al Curnow, Senior Consultant Buckle up. March Madness is here.  It’s the best time of the year.    For any college basketball junkie, this is a time of pure bliss.   In two weeks, the brackets will be set and we’ll become inundated with games from dawn to dusk.  While there’ll likely be a few Cinderella stories among the games, the men’s and women’s tournaments are typically dominated by many of the traditionally strong programs (think UCONN or Tennessee among the women’s programs, or Duke and North Carolina among the men).    What is it about these programs that make them perennial ...

Things are just fine right now, or are they?

By Rob Wolff, Senior Consultant Many of the CEOs/owners whom I speak with about their cultures are usually pretty satisfied with their current state.  They often indicate that they’re making money and their employees seem to mostly be doing the right things.  In their estimation, things are good enough and so working on their culture isn’t much of a priority.  In fact, they have other more pressing issues that they barely have the time to address. Why Invest Time on Culture? Given their relatively stable situation, many wonder why they should spend much time on culture.  The answers here can ...
High Performing Culture

5 Reasons to make culture a priority

By David Friedman, Founder/CEO Everywhere you look these days – from the business journals to the sports magazines – people are writing and talking about culture. Organizations of every type have realized the powerful role that culture plays in success, and rather than relegating it to an HR initiative, the best ones have made it a key strategic priority. In my observation, there are 5 key drivers for this shift in prioritization, and one or more of these apply to virtually every one of us. To stand out and win business Most of us exist in pretty commoditized industries, where …

You Culture | High Performing Culture

Your Culture Should Be Completely Unique, Right?

By Jake Friedman, Consultant Wrong. Don’t reinvent the wheel. Use best practices. These type of maxims are liberally dispensed in most aspects of business, but when it comes to culture, there’s often some hesitancy to apply the same concepts. Shouldn’t your culture be completely unique to your company? Wouldn’t the behaviors your employees need to practice be different from the ones that the next company practices? Actually, no. In fact, I’d argue quite the opposite. For the most part, the large majority of behaviors (or “Fundamentals,” as we call them) being practiced in a world-class company are likely the same …