Changing Organizational Culture By Changing Your Leadership Mindset: 5 Resources You Need

Changing Organizational Culture By Changing Your Leadership Mindset: 5 Resources You Need
Katherine Canales/SweetRush
Summary: Where does organizational culture change start? With you as a leader, through changing your leadership mindset. Your inner change can be powerful in creating some of the changes you desire around you. Apply these tools to get movement on your culture journey.

5 Resources To Change Your Organizational Culture

Either change the company or change the company.

Plainly put, make improvements to the company you’re with now, or find another employer. In many ways, this adage is true. If we’re not happy where we are, we can try to effect change or move on. Being stuck without options in a bad situation without movement is the worst of all worlds and a prescription for depression and anxiety.

There is, however, a third way, and that’s to change yourself. If you’re a senior leader in an organization, your inner change will likely create some of the change you desire around you... and this is a change you can control!

eBook Release: Secrets Of Effective L&D Leaders: Innovation, Embracing Change, And Cultural Transformation
eBook Release
Secrets Of Effective L&D Leaders: Innovation, Embracing Change, And Cultural Transformation
Discover insights and practical advice on culture change and transformation.

Often, our unhappiness is due to not working the way we naturally work. For those of you who know Myers Briggs [1], for the first decade of my career, I thought I needed to show up as an ESTJ—so I tried to [2]. I thought that to be valued and be valuable, I had to be extroverted and make all the decisions through data, rational thought, and sheer drive. But as I’ve come into my own, I’ve discovered that I am the polar opposite, as an INFP [3]. I do best when I can reflect deeply and connect one-on-one or with a small group.

Many of us are driven to think that we will add value if we are focused tenaciously on the bottom line. Some of us sacrifice time with our families for the benefit of employers, striving to achieve, accomplish, contribute. We are utterly dedicated—unafraid to roll up our sleeves and get things done, regardless of the effort required. This is what got many of us into leadership positions.

However, if we’re now in senior positions and still doing what got us here, we might be working against our natural style, and might not be listening to team members who rely on us for direction and inspiration. Ways of working to move up the ladder might differ from the right way of working once we’re on top, and thus require change. You may have progressed by performance-based drive, but squeezing higher performance out of team members works on only certain types of tasks—and for only so long, and it’s only part of the leadership playbook [4]. Knowledge workers need something else, and though we may have attended the occasional management or leadership development course, if you are still stuck, it's imperative to continue to look for ways to change.

So how do we create a culture change? Start with ourselves. The following are 5 resources to start you on your journey:

  1. Learn your Myers Briggs Profile through this 16Personalities test [5]. Discuss it with your significant other, friend, and team members.
  2. Take a free personal values assessment and fill out the corresponding questions with the report [6]. If you enjoy the personal values assessment, you may also want to check out the 360-degree leadership values assessment to see how your colleagues perceive you [7].
  3. Read the first few chapters of Get Connected and complete the personal reflection exercises [8]. It’s a practical guide to growing a desired team culture—with practical tools to start you on your path to reflection and personal connection before working more deeply with your team.
  4. Read The New Leadership Paradigm [9]. This book leads you through concepts and exercises around leading yourself, leading a team, leading an organization, and leading in society.
  5. Get a coach to accompany you on your journey to becoming a better leader. The more aligned you are in your values and behaviors, the more aligned your team will become. Leadership integrity and coherence is the number one predictor of the health of the organizational culture.

It’s easy for us to point fingers and want the world to be different for us. The most powerful thing we can do is to become acutely aware of our passion and values—and to live those fully throughout our daily life and work. Stand on your own two feet! When we live with that level of purpose, the world around us can’t help but change.

Sometimes we’ll make choices to further change the company or change the company. At the end of the day, while you cannot always change the entire company, you never need to feel stuck knowing you can continue to change yourself, and this is not only what is most self-serving, it might be the catalyst for company change as well.

L&D leaders need innovative, high-performing teams to meet today’s challenges. You need a high-performing team of pros with abundant creativity and a drive to innovate. The solution? Culture change. Download the eBook Secrets Of Effective L&D Leaders: Innovation, Embracing Change, And Cultural Transformation and find out more.


[1] Myers–Briggs Type Indicator

[2] ESTJ Personality Type

[3] INFP Personality Type

[4] RSA ANIMATE: Drive: The surprising truth about what motivates us

[5] Free Personality Test

[6] Personal Values Assessment

[7] Leadership Values Assessment

[8] Get Connected

[9] The New Leadership Paradigm

eBook Release: SweetRush
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