What happens when you’re ready for a culture change, but you know that your company is not. What can a leader do or say in this position?
Once the culture standards (values) are determined, the leader must absolutely live by example. There’s no way around that. But that can take time. What can the leader do or say now?
First and foremost -share the why. Why a culture shift? Why do you want change? How will we all benefit.
Secondly, invite them to opt-out…
“In order to develop this culture, we have to change our behaviors. Now some of you are very excited about this and have wanted it for a long time. Others may be resistant. We’ll work through it together, but let me be absolutely clear – If you have the sense you do not want to be here, or you know in your heart that you are not giving 100% to your job, then I recommend you start considering other options while it’s still your choice.”
Setting standards can be very powerful – if you keep to them. And it’s actually a courtesy to let people know you will do that in advance so that they can choose their own future.