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The OCAI Blog about Culture

Here’s where I blog about organizational culture, culture change, and the Competing Values Framework and the OCAI culture survey. Frequency of posting: about every 2 weeks.

The Leadership & Change Blog

Here’s where I write about Positive Leadership, Organizational Culture, Organizational Change, New Organizations, Personal Development and reflection. In addition, the blog category Positive Power is a book that I blog in real-time! The purpose is to upgrade to positive organizations where both people and performance thrive. 
Frequency of posting: every week
  • How do you respond to intimidation?
    It’s a beautiful intention to use your personal positive power and be a positive agent. But what about being bullied and intimidated? Some workplaces are toxic or dangerous. I know. It’s for you to decide when you are safe enough to do something about it. Let’s take a quick look at intimidation, bullying, unreasonable negative feedback, harsh criticism or vague ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-11-28
  • How do you respond to politics at work?
    How do you respond to political plotting? It may not be easy but it is necessary to contribute to more positive workplaces! And it’s something you can do, regardless of your role. Every interaction makes a difference. Again, it’s important to acknowledge the others’ underlying need. It might be a need to bond with an ally or the need to ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-11-21
  • Ask me Anything: Best Culture for Men versus Women?
    Is there a difference between the culture profiles of men and women at work? Do they thrive in different cultures? Here’s an interesting question in response to my “Ask Me Anything on Culture” offer, so let’s take a look! The database of OCAI Online contains the responses of thousands of people across the globe. (In my new book, I’ll share a culture profile of what most people desire at work compared to what they currently experience! Stay tuned! Expected publishing date in December). For now, let’s focus on the difference between men and women in the USA.OCAIOrganizational culture ...
    Source: OCAI onlinePublished on 2017-11-16
  • How do you respond to gossip?
    How do you feel when someone gossips or complains about someone else? It depends, of course. It can be great to agree because it creates a feeling of bonding. “The two of us agree and it’s us against that person or that issue”. It can be such a relief to vent. But it may not be what you’d like to ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-11-14
  • How to address monsters in meta?
    In this post, let’s take a look at how you could address “monsters in the room” and use “meta-communication” that addresses the how and why. First, it’s crucial to check your attitude: Am I treating the other as a person? Next, you could ask yourself: What do I want for myself, the other, and the relationship? Are you entrenched within ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-11-07
  • Ask me Anything: Culture Benchmarks?
    Are benchmarks useful? How can my organization learn from the culture profile of our economic sector? I received this question in response to the “Ask Me Anything on Culture” and I’m happy to answer it here. Compare yourself In general, companies love benchmarks. It gives an opportunity to compare the organization to the competition in the same market. It seems to answer the question: how are we doing? Are we normal? Are better or worse?Competing Values FrameworkOCAIOrganizational culture ...
    Source: OCAI onlinePublished on 2017-11-02
  • Is it safe or are there monsters?
    I simply love the Crucial Conversations book that covers how to have any conversation and respond to any reaction, while you stay true to yourself and enhance safety and respect in the relationship. Conversations are often difficult when stakes are high, opinions vary, and emotions run strong. Most people avoid them or don’t handle them well, resulting in the silence ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-10-31
  • How to train your listening skills?
    The counterpart of Inquiry is Listening. As we are often in telling mode and we value doing over being, listening may not come naturally. I assume that we could all use the exercise below and repeat it from time to time. I myself have to slow down, focus my attention and practice patience. I’m always tempted to jump in and ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-10-24
  • Me Too
    What has the #MeToo movement on social media to do with organizational culture? It's a great example of a social movement trying to change a culture, starting with what I call "Interaction Interventions".ChangeLeadershipOrganizational culture ...
    Source: OCAI onlinePublished on 2017-10-19
  • Possibility-oriented questions
    In the last post, we have seen that our behavior follows our questions. For instance, I could complain about the lack of response to my emails. I could ask limiting questions that focus on finding the culprit. Why do they not even have the courtesy to reply? Who ignores my emails? These questions will make me feel annoyed and not ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-10-17
  • What do you ask to influence others?
    In our culture of telling, to ask can be judged as ignorance while leaders are supposed to know what to do. Telling is expected and respected. And it feels so good to give advice, thinking we have solved someone else’s problem! But wise leaders use questions to engage people and encourage them to take ownership. Looking at the lack of ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-10-10
  • Hofstede Culture Dimensions
    I’ve introduced Geert Hofstede a couple of posts ago, so I’ll share a bit more about his work as an “in-between post” in my Personal Positive Power blog series. He researched national cultures and I admire his work. He offers insights about organizational culture as well: check out his book “Cultures and Organizations – software of the mind – Intercultural ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-10-05
  • Culture Secrets
    Companies who consider the OCAI to change their culture often ask me for success rates. Apart from OCAI’s thorough research basis and validation, they want to assess up front whether it will be worth the time and money. Does the OCAI work? Does the OCAI work? The truthful but rather lame answer is that the OCAI works if you put in the work. One of our partner consultants summarizes this for her clients before they start. There are three possible outcomes when you use the OCAI to assess your current and preferred culture.Case StudiesChange ManagementCompeting Values FrameworkOCAI ...
    Source: OCAI onlinePublished on 2017-10-04
  • The art of asking
    Humble Inquiry is the art of asking questions to which you do not already know the answer. It is building a relationship based on curiosity and interest in the other person, says Edgar Schein in his book Humble Inquiry. Our culture is biased toward telling. When in telling mode, we hope to educate, impress, or to entertain. Western, egalitarian and ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-10-03
  • Silence, Violence or Flow?
    What kind of interactions are taking place around you? A helpful discernment is whether there is silence, violence, or a natural flow in a conversation – as described in Patterson’s a.o. book Crucial Conversations. In crucial conversations there is a lot at stake and we often hold things inside by going silent until we can take it no longer—and then ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-09-26
  • Are you aware of culture?
    Lately, I discussed communication in my Personal Positive Power series to make a positive difference. But are you aware of how your communication is influenced by the culture you’re part of? Geert Hofstede, the Dutch culture researcher and one of my true gurus (I love his work) says: Culture reproduces itself. You learn when to be proud and when to ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-09-21
  • How national is your organizational culture?
    This is a dangerous question, probably. Every answer is a generalization of national culture, and we're often sensitive because it touches on identity. But the question is relevant. Stubborn I used to be Dutch. In my first job, working with the Dutch Army, I heard that Dutch soldiers were seen as stubborn and (too) autonomous. Foreign generals who commanded multinational troops had to get used to the Dutch. They could not simply "order" the Dutch to do something. They wanted a Why, an explanation, and sometimes even offered alternatives. "What if we...."Change ManagementLeadershipOrganizational culture ...
    Source: OCAI onlinePublished on 2017-09-21
  • Are you congruent?
    In every interaction there are three levels that influence its effect and meaning: What – the content; the words I say How – the process; how I say it (nonverbal communication) Why – the intention; the meaning, what I am trying to accomplish with this interaction. We tend to focus on What people say and are less aware of the ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-09-19
  • Are you strategic or reactive about your culture?
    Guest post by Sarah Skidmore Company culture is a touchy subject for some business owners. And, as a professional coach, if I don’t approach the client within their context, I most certainly will receive a defensive response.Case StudiesOCAI ...
    Source: OCAI onlinePublished on 2017-09-14
  • Positive Communication
    “Every professional context is created by the conversations that people have. (..) Every moment of interaction is important. Positive communication can help create positive organizational climates, high-quality relationships, and affect a wide range of outcomes such as health, learning, or morale.” That’s what researchers Julien Mirivel and Ryan Fuller found out. Even something as simple as the absence or presence ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-09-12
  • Personal Positive Power from me to YOU
    Welcome back, positive people! I hope your summer was energizing! Are you ready to continue your path to being a positive agent and contributing to positive change, regardless of your position? If you’ve been following this book that I blog online, you’ve done your personal preparation and you’re ready, willing and able to be a positive agent. If you just ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-09-05
  • Using the OCAI in Leadership Search
    Guest post by Marc T. Frankel and Judith SchechtmanCase StudiesLeadershipOCAIOrganizational culture ...
    Source: OCAI onlinePublished on 2017-08-31
  • Being Positive
    Guest post by Graham Williams. “The frames our minds create define – and confine – what we perceive to be possible. Every problem, every dilemma, every dead end we find ourselves facing in life, only appears unsolvable inside a particular frame or point of view”. That is what Rosamund Stone & Benjamin Zander explain in their book The Art of ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-08-29
  • Compassion at Work
    Compassion at Work is a really important book for people to read and, moreover, to apply. As Fred Kofman wrote in Conscious Business, “There are no death camps in corporations, but many apparently successful companies hide great suffering in their basements.” Is it really that bad? There are still too many organizations where it is that bad. That’s why the ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-08-23
  • Did you ever fail forward?
    What does it mean to Fail Forward? According to quora.com, “Failing forward implies moving forward despite failures.” Failing forward is essential to learn and develop in your life and work. It’s getting out of your comfort zone and trying something new. It is a crucial part of self-development, and it’s embedded in the culture of successful innovative, entrepreneurial, and agile ... Read More ...
    Source: L&C MagazinePublished on 2017-08-15
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