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Culture Pioneers: Four tips for telling your organisation's culture change story

With the deadline for HRZone's Culture Pioneers fast approaching, Blaire Plamer shares a few insights on what the ambassadors of the intitiative are looking for from your stories...

19th Oct 2020
Author, speaker, agent provocateur for senior leaders and their teams That People Thing
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Culture Pioneers
Culture Pioneers

If you've not already heard about HRZone's Culture Pioneers, the initiative was launched in July 2020 to champion the achievements of those who are adapting their culture to drive positive change in the midst of the pandemic.

We’re inviting all UK HR and L&D professionals to share their culture change stories with us – to tell us how they are better equipping and empowering their workers and learners in such challenging times. The stories and achievements needn’t be large-scale by any means. We’re simply looking for people or businesses who have found new and inspiring ways of creating positivity from adversity. Individuals or groups that are doing something that makes a genuine difference.

By sharing your story, you will be in with a chance of having your achievements showcased across HRZone to its community of 90,000 people professionals, positioning you and your organisation as leaders of people-first culture. (The deadline for submissions is 30th October 2020, 23:59pm GMT.)

If you're considering sharing your story, but are unsure of what to include, or whether you have what we're looking for, Blaire Palmer, one of our Culture Pioneers ambassadors, has shared a few tips and insights to help you.

How to craft your story...

When it comes to culture, statistics don’t tell the whole story. In fact, there are many reasons why pure data can paint an overly positive or negative picture, depending how you use it and the motivation of the people contributing to the data.

Culture is about a feeling. Do people feel that the culture that’s talked about and the culture they experience are aligned? Do people feel that efforts to improve the culture are motivated by the best of intentions? Is it easier for people to be themselves and do their best work than it used to be? Is there consistency or is there one rule for one and another rule for someone else? Are initiatives thoughtful, relevant to the specifics of the business and always up for review and adaptation?

When you submit your experiences and tell us about your initiatives, reflect your culture in the way you tell your story. If your culture is all about authenticity, tell your story in an authentic way. We won’t be impressed by ‘gloss’! If your culture submission is about inclusion, consider who has input into how the story is told.

If you have statistics or can show a bottom line benefit we want to see it. After all, you work in a business and while it’s important to create a positive culture as an end in itself, ultimately the business should benefit, otherwise we could be focusing our attention on other ways to make a difference to the business and its customers.

Finally, we aren’t expecting you to have completed your journey because, as you know, there is no end.

Tell us about the initiatives that aren’t working so well and what you’re doing about that. Surprise us with seemingly benign changes you’ve made that have had a disproportionate benefit. Tell us what you’re learning that you didn’t know before you began. Don’t be afraid to show off about your success too. You should be proud of what you’re achieving.

As my Dad always says, ‘don’t hide your light under a bushel”.

Culture Pioneers

Blaire’s tips:

  1. Don’t be discouraged if you’re only part way through your story – we still want to hear from you

  2. Reflect your culture in the way you tell your story – be authentic

  3. Your people are what make your culture, so invite them to communicate their views

  4. Share with us evidence of business benefits if available, but know that this is not essential

Questions to ask yourself...

Culture Pioneers pillars

If you are doing any of the above then we want to hear about it!

Share your story by 30th October 23:59pm (GMT) for the chance to have your hard work recognsied and celebrated!

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