Several years ago, two independent organizations set off on journeys to transform their cultures. Both organizations wanted to move from environments that valued protecting the status quo and were resistant to change to cultures in which change was rapid, structured, and pervasive.
They both got off to a good start by clearly identifying their organizational philosophy. An identical set of tools was identified by both organizations to support their journeys.
As both organizations embarked from this common starting point, their paths began to diverge. In one organization, the philosophy began to take root, the tools were used consistently throughout the organization, and the culture continued to mature. Employees at all levels of the organization bought into the new ideas and their teams began to thrive.
In the second organization, changes in the culture were much less widespread. Individual pockets embraced the new ideas, but the results were not sustained. Years after their journey began, the culture was not significantly different from where it started.
So, what was the difference?