I recently switched jobs to a company that is smaller than my last but where I have the ability to truly achieve success or crash and burn. It’s slightly terrifying but I try to follow Richard Branson’s example of just saying yes to things first and then figuring it out as I go along.
One thing I realized after taking the role is I am the one that must set the cultural standard. It’s not that the company doesn’t have one, but most of the employees are remote and we rarely see each other.
As a result there is not really a zeitgeist in the office that tends to guide everyone’s actions. It took me a couple of weeks to reach this conclusion, but once I did I sought out some resources on how to set a standard.
I was not blessed with an iron will. For me I must work every day at maintaining discipline and work ethic. It’s not a battle, but it’s something I am very much aware of and I take steps to ensure I set myself up for success.
One way I do this is through emulation of others. I realize this may not be groundbreaking but I think it’s important to remember.
When I was growing up I would see people at the top of their game or profession and a lot of times not think about the work it took to get there. As I have matured I realize it takes great effort to achieve success and we must make it a priority. There are several people I follow on LinkedIn that hold influence. I try to emulate what they have done to form my own identity and culture.
I have also sought out mentors throughout my career. Some of these are formal, but some are not. I reach out to them for specific needs or learning opportunities.
What do you use for guidance when setting a culture? Is it a company, ideal or person?
I believe all can benefit when creating an identity, as long as we are choosing the right example to emulate.
Image credit: Ron Mader