That Isn’t a Bug, It’s a Feature

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I had a really interesting conversation about culture the other day with a successful CEO in the NY tech community. We were talking about the difficulty certain companies might have in recruiting because of their culture. For instance, SumAll exposes your salary to everyone in the organization. This is all about creating a radically transparent culture. NBC News asked a bunch of NYers how they’d feel about this policy and many, if not the majority, said they wouldn’t want to work for a company that was structured that way.. Turns out, those people wouldn’t be a good cultural fit. Imagine an organization that said teamwork was their highest value and were building a culture that supported teamwork. That organization might decide to have a large part of sales commission to be team based, and a smaller part based on individual contribution. That would make total sense for the culture. It would also mean you would miss out on hiring many talented salespeople. And that’s okay. Culture is more important than any one sales person. Hiring that superstar individual contributor might be the start of cultural decay. That isn’t a bug of culture, it’s a feature.
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I am an organization development consultant, helping NY tech startups understand group process and the way group dynamics impact their teams.

Posted in Entrepreneurship and OD
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