What You Didn't Learn in Business School...
As a CEO you wear many hats, as a leader you take responsibility for all the failures and you give away credit for all the successes. In 20 years of growing a company there is one task, one objective, one critical aspect of being a CEO that has far outweighed all my other responsibilities, and you don't see it talked about in school! You won’t find a company where there is any larger asset on its books, than the team that makes up the company. A company is not a company without its people. As a CEO that is ultimately responsible for everything in your organization, how much time do you think you should spend on your biggest asset? What I have learned from my experience is that developing the right culture, then hiring people that fit that culture, investing in maintaining that culture and living the culture is of the most important roles of the CEO. As for how much time you spend doing it, that depends on the health of the culture in your organization. If your team can't define your culture, you need to spend a lot of time in this area. If you have a healthy culture along with a healthy environment and the team lives up to the culture, you need to spend time living it and nurturing it. Of course if you have a true culture, it doesn't take time as it's becomes inherently who you are.
What if you don't want to invest time on the topic of culture, that's fine because your organization will still have a culture, a culture in which your team will build and likely a culture that will be very different than what you had hoped for. Oh, and if you don't have time to focus on culture, it's o.k. because the culture that builds in your organization without your involvement will later take all your time fixing why you have customer issues, HR issues and shrinking bottom lines.
Our culture at Something Fishy Inc. is of course FISH, Fun, Irresistible, Simple & Honest. We use that culture to test whether we should hire a team member, let go of a team member, chase a business venture, do business with or not to do business with a customer, vendor or other partner.
While our company has spent a lot of time building a culture and we live it every day, we always look to make it better. Yesterday we did just that by closing our office, showroom and service division for one day so 100% of our team could attend the Atrion's Always On Symposium in Providence,
The Fish Guy
PS – Aquarium Exhibits support positive cultures in any space!