I heard a story today that made me stop and think. I hadn’t really sat and thought about the word culture in a while.

A sales rep was reprimanded for sending an email. The email was accurate and long overdue as the company has had long standing challenges.

The sales rep was told, “It’s not their company culture to send an email like that”.

Bigger picture – the sales rep was left scratching their head- what is their culture?

When I heard the story, it made me think. How does someone define their company culture? The senior manager who said this has not delivered one bit of team building or information sharing all year. But then reprimanded the employee for going against the corporate culture that had never even been communicated. The manager under him said the same thing and actually sent an email along the same lines so they were no better. To make it even more interesting the owner isn’t revered positively, and they have lost many top reps due to his behavior and the behavior of the managers. So, from the top down there are leadership challenges.

What is the mindset of a person who makes a statement like that? Are they not aware of their own lack of leadership that actually makes the rep feel the culture isn’t great to begin with? Or do they think they are above their own behavior and lack of good leadership?

It takes a lot for a company to reach inside deep and realize they aren’t walking the walk. And if someone were to try to speak up in an environment like this the likelihood that it falls on deaf ears or just adds fuel to the fire is very high.

If you are a leader what would you do?

It’s interesting to think about.


Photo from Pexels.