How your organization feels is a result of the culture you build (or inherit). I’m not talking about your mission statement or values printed in the annual report. I’m talking about the active ingredients to your daily operation. For instance, you may have identified excellence as a value. It may even be printed in your brochure and hung on the wall with a cool Successories poster.  But if everything else around you screams "we are about good enough" as opposed to excellence the dissonance will be glaring, even audible.

One of the most critical values an organization can have is authenticity.  You may call it a number of things, but what happens in the conversations you have (and in the aftershock conversations about what was said earlier) determines much of your team’s potential for success.  And I want to be sure you understand that by success I mean real and lasting impact.  Authenticity is the foundation for real impact.  Marketing and technique can produce initial buzz.  With all that we know today it is not hard to get that initial vibe going.  Actually doing something that makes a difference only happens when there is authenticity that serves as the foundation for what you’re doing.  And that authenticity begins with your lead team.

One of the elements that must be present within your lead team is trust and trust grows out of a determined authenticity.  Andy Stanley has a great article on Choosing to Trust in May’s Catalyst Monthly.  I particularly love this line:

Trust is not built on flawless characther, but on authenticity.  I will extend trust to people who will admit their imperfections.  It is people who defend their infallibility who make me suspicious."

As you’re building your culture, is trust one of the building blocks?  You can read Andy’s whole article here.

Building a Culture