Every organization creates goals and strategic steps to move them towards achieving their goals. What is rare are the organizations that repeatedly go through this process and are successful every year. The successful organizations have something that the others do not have. They have a culture of performance and success.
Success is what separates the top from the bottom and when it is ingrained in your culture you are destined to achieve great things. In his book, The Score Takes Care of Itself, Bill Walsh talks about creating a standard of performance. The standard of performance is a set of expectations that are detailed and clear for every member of the San Francisco 49ers organization from the custodian to the receptionist to the head coach. Everyone is expected to be a contributor to the organization.
I had the opportunity to be part of a high performing culture in college. I recall the clear expectations, brutal honesty, and accountability that permeated the organization. The attention to detail was palpable in every way. There were clear expectations and a shared mission in place and we achieved high levels of success.
“The culture precedes positive results. It doesn’t get tacked on as an afterthought on your way to the victory stand. Champions behave like champions before they’re champions; they have a winning standard of performance before they are winners.” -Bill Walsh
In many cases, leaders don’t have the opportunity to build your culture from the ground up. They can, however, ensure that the talent they acquire from this moment forward aligns with their expectations. Leaders can also challenge your current staff to raise their performance to a new level. To create a culture of performance in your organization today, implement these three action steps.
3 Action Steps to Create a Culture of Performance
1. Lead and coach for performance
2. Hold your team accountable
3. Empower leaders to lead from where they are
Is your culture one of performance and success? How do you know?
Walsh, B., Jamison, S., & Walsh, C. (2010). The score takes care of itself: my philosophy of leadership. New York: Portfolio.