Defining a company’s culture can be tricky. Actually changing that culture can be even tougher. One effective way to drive internal change, however, is through what is known as “culture champions.” Here is our helpful guide on creating a culture champions network.
What Exactly are “Champions Networks?”
Just like every single company is different, so is every single company’s culture. What is a company culture, anyway? Well, it’s something that we know quite a bit about here at Culture-Strategy Fit – after all, it’s what we do. A company’s culture is the dynamic ethos that can either drive workers together or drive them apart. As Medium notes, a company’s culture, “is inclusive of the things that make an organization great, but also the things that serve as a drawback.”
So, how does a “champions network” fit into company culture? Put simply, champions are those individuals who not only set the example of excellence for other employees but also generate the enthusiasm and buzz which inspires them. In the book, “The Tipping Point: How Little Things Make a Big Difference,” author Malcolm Gladwell states, “If you want to bring fundamental change in people’s beliefs and behavior, you need to create a community around them, where those new beliefs can be practiced and expressed and nurtured.”
What does this mean? It means change can’t happen as the result of just one person – you need a team to grow momentum.
Creating a Culture Champions Network
So, how does a company go about building a network of culture champions? It isn’t an overnight process – after all, if it were easy to do, everyone would have implemented it by now. However, there are specific steps which can be taken to build a network of champions in your company:
- Have a clear purpose as to why exactly you need champions, what you need them to do, and say how you plan to get them to where they need to be.
- Make the role of a champion prestigious, by adding to others’ impressions of the role: perhaps adding an official title, opening up the position to nominations, or other such ideas.
- Be patient with the program to ensure your champions have the time needed to grow and engage with the role fully.
- Give your champions the trust they need to empower them to lead by example.
- Get your senior leadership to endorse the program, giving it a greater sense of legitimacy.
- Coach your champions and provide them with the proper training they need to be effective.
- Check in regularly with your champions to build relationships with them.
- Encourage your leaders to support each other.
Once you have built your network of culture champions and begin to see the benefits they bring, it is essential that you have a plan of action to ensure that your network survives and thrives.
If You Need Help Developing or Sustaining a Winning Culture, We’re Here to Help
Inspiring cultural change can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. Culture has a great capacity to help businesses achieve truly great things. If you need help defining or improving your business’s culture, check out some of Culture-Strategy Fit’s excellent cultural products and services, or give us a call today at 1 (800) 976-1660 for a free consultation.