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Culture Change Metrics

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  • #37477

    anon
    Participant

    Can you guys help out with a Metric issue ?
    I would like to accurately  measure ‘Culture Change’ ?
    What are your Top 5 metrics that could be best suited to this hurdle?
    A bit of background, I work for a large successful multi-national were the culture has been slow to change and embrace Continuous Improvement in it’s entirity, we have pockets of excellence like most companies but are way behind in others……
    All suggestions gratefully received,
    Anon.
     
     

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    #110393

    Peppe
    Participant

    Start doing a list of change activity you whish apply and define the KPI for that. The top five depends by the actual level from you start.
    Have your comapny ISO9000 culture already ?
    Regards, Peppe 

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    #110395

    anon
    Participant

    Yes we have had a comprehensive ISO 9000 structure for many years.
    I don’t think our business goals are any different to many other’s – Customer Satisfaction, Growth, ROI, Profitability, Cash Flow, ETC ETC.
    Anon. 

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    #110397

    Peppe
    Participant

    Anon, if you whish to do a cultural changes, I understand that you have already identified some areas of improvements. Is it correct ?  If so, plan what you whish to improve and try to define the best KPI for that. If you are looking for a cultural change guidelines, first of all, you have to define where you are and where you want go. With this clear in mind a framework of plan can be approached. KPI are defined by points you want change.
    Regards, Peppe

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    #110585

    Deanb
    Participant

    Anon,
    Before you can measure a thing you first must define what that thing is. In culture change, definitions of what culture is and what constitutes good change varies wildly in both the management and six-sigma literature.
    I like Juran’s definition: “Companies will compete successfully if they have created a system of values, beliefs, and behaviors (individual and team)-a culture-necessary for that success.” (Jurans handbook, 4th ed, 10:17.)
    In process improvement, I have found that the “culture necessary for success” can be correlated quantitatively with 5 measurable factors using survey data, FMEA analysis, or casual observations:
    1. Role of the Manager: To meet the bosses requirements while helping subordinates cope and succeed. The more aggressive the improvement initiative the greater the emphasis on the latter that is required. Distand or detached leadership is a common killer of improvement initiatives and culture development.
    2. Formal System: Good governance-knowing for whose benefit and at whose expense the organization is supposed to operate for- and reflecting this theme consistently through operating procedures without moral exclusions. The greater the moral exclusions, the more hardened and less change oriented the culture will be.
    3. Informal System: Honest dialog (data driven, without spin and manipulation), openness, common courtesy as the norm, root cause focus (not scapegoating), committed and satisfied employees, commensurate rewards for risks, responsibilities and accomplishments. These are regarded by many as some of the core attributes of a positive and supportable culture.
    4. Integration of the above 3 points into process improvement initiatives. Process improvement only helps create positive culture if it does its part to apply positive culture. When it deviates from these principles, it can actually degrade the culture (make it worse), hence making process improvement harder.
    5. Participant satisfaction validating a mutual sense of improvement. Improvement must work for all (the culture) for a culture to have an incentive to support the changes. Culture is human energy waiting to be tapped. On this note I will leave you with Crosby’s definition of culture: “A system of behavior.” You can work this system according to its nature, or fight it. The choice is yours. 
    Good luck

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    #110587

    Jeff Fuchs
    Participant

    Two points.
    First of all, “culture” has some different interpretations. The meaning I have come to know is that culture is the shared values, beliefs, world views and assumptions of a group with a common experience. Wherever a group exists, culture forms. Culture is what we habitually do. We adopt a certain culture because the habits that flow from those values, beliefs, and assumptions have led to group success in the past. We, therefore, repeat them. They become engrained and part of our “culture”. As one author on the topic has put it, “culture is the residue of success.” To change culture in a lasting way, therefore, you must create increased group success around a different set of values, beliefs, and assumptions.
    I make this point because, expressed this way, culture change can be subjective and tricky to measure. You can count up change activities, but these are merely physical artifacts. They do not accurately measure changing values, beliefs, and assumptions. It is my assertion – and I’m sure others who deal with this topic on a daily basis like myself will back this up – that the best way to gauge changes in culture is by surveying groups. Tools are available from any of the major publishers on the topic.
    One excellent framework is provided in Diagnosing and Changing Organizational Culture by Cameron and Quinn (Addison-Welsey and Prentice Hall, 1999). The authors describe four basic cultural styles, based on internal or external focus, control or flexibility. They provide survey questions for assessing where your group is on the map. Others have built on this basic model and subdivided the groups further, but the basic 2 x 2 matrix is usually sufficient. I have used this technique with numerous organizations in deploying Lean/Six Sigma and they have found the method enlightening and useful.
    I hope this helps you.

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    #110664

    Farhad Antia
    Participant

    Hi
    Culture can be crudely measured by a few metrics like..
    1. No of improvement suggestions …if U have a suggestion process
    2. No of complaints to HR / Employee relations about people issues, payroll issues etc
    3. Cross functional appreciation / nominations for recognition, awards etc
    4. Celebration of special events, birthdays, festivals etc.
    5. Attendance / absenteeism at Training programs
    6. Cross functional invitations to meetings of verticals…(do we even think that others add value… or is a function completely insulated.
    7. Cross fucntional teams working to solve cross functional problems.
    8. Time spent in forums discussing issues and problems.
    9. Complaints from customers about customer service etc.
    10. Number of nominations for awards / recognition etc
    11 Finally the cliched….employee sat surveys, surveys of fun at work etc
    Some wacky ideas… Install a buzzer or bell at some common area… Ask people to ring it if they had a good day at work. get the receptionist to count the rings.
    Have
     
     

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    #110777

    RR
    Member

    Dear Jeff Fuchs,
    Very good and to the point explanation.
    By the way can u pls tell me where to get the framework u r mentioning about assessing a group’s stance, as our company has just started implementing Six sigma and we are also into Lean manufacturing.
    Rgds,
    RR 

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    #110784

    Anon.
    Participant

    Thanks to all, Especially Jeff & Dean,
    Some inciteful stuff with which I can move forward, Thanks again for all your input,
    Much appreciated,
    Anon.
     
     

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    #110790

    Jeff Fuchs
    Participant

    RR,
    The framework is in the book I mentioned, Diagnosing and Changing Organizational Culture by Cameron and Quinn (Addison-Welsey and Prentice Hall, 1999).  Best of luck. Contact me at [email protected] if you have other questions.
    Jeff

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    #110792

    Jeff Fuchs
    Participant

    Farhad,
    I would approach these measures with the greatest of care. They may be useful cultural indicators, but culture change in what direction? Many of the items you describe here are indicators of a particular cultural style that emphasizes an internal focus on decentralized decision-making and positive interpersonal relationships. While I would agree that this is a cultural direction that many (if not the majority) of U.S. firms need to head in reshaping their corporate cultures, this is not the only cultural direction available, nor is it necessarily well-aligned with all possible business strategies. I suggest that the first step would be to map current state culture and desired future state culture and decided whether measures in the directions you indicate are appropriate.

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