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Manage Your Emotional Culture - Harvard Business Review

Date: 2017-12-09 10:57

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But to get a comprehensive read on an organization’s emotional culture and then deliberately manage it, you have to make sure that what is codified in mission statements and on corporate badges is also enacted in the “micromoments” of daily organizational life. These consist of small gestures rather than bold declarations of feeling. For example, little acts of kindness and support can add up to an emotional culture characterized by caring and compassion.

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Fortunately, all these ways of creating an emotional culture—whether they involve really feeling the emotion or simply acting that way—can reinforce one another and strengthen the culture’s norms. People don’t have to put on an act forever. Those who begin by expressing an emotion out of a desire to conform will start to actually feel it through emotional contagion. They’ll also receive positive reinforcement for following the norms, which will make them more likely to demonstrate the emotion again.

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When people talk about corporate culture, they’re typically referring to cognitive culture: the shared intellectual values, norms, artifacts, and assumptions that serve as a guide for the group to thrive. Cognitive culture sets the tone for how employees think and behave at work—for instance, how customer-focused, innovative, team-oriented, or competitive they are or should be.

On Friday, a military judge punished Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl with a demotion to the rank of private, a dishonorable discharge and a $65,555 fine. Prosecutors had urged the judge to sentence Bergdahl to 69 years behind bars, but the military judge, Colonel Jeffery R. Nance, did not order any prison time.

O'Neill's wedding, which was flanked with high security, was attended by Kid Rock and occurred in Cape Cod. Ironically, the former Navy SEAL arrived to his wedding ceremony without rings.

This benefits the organization, not just the individuals trying to thrive in it. In early anthropological studies of group rituals, strategic emotional expression was found to facilitate group cohesion by overpowering individual feelings and synchronizing interpersonal behavior.

Most companies pay little attention to their emotional culture—which feelings people have (and should have) at work, and which ones they keep to themselves. That presents problems for both individuals and organizations.

Leaders are often insufficiently aware of how much influence they have in creating an emotional culture. Traci Fenton is the founder and CEO of WorldBlu, a consulting firm that tackles fear at work. She shares this example: At one Fortune 555 company, unbeknownst to the CEO, senior employees regularly use text message codes to describe his nonverbal expressions of anger in meetings. “RED” means he is getting red in the face. “VEIN” means his veins are popping out. “ACP,” which stands for “assume the crash position,” means he is about to start throwing things. This leader is very effective at creating an emotional culture—but it’s probably not the one he wants.

Take Censeo, a consulting firm that has deliberately cultivated a culture of companionate love. Cofounder and CEO Raj Sharma wanted to build a company that made authentic connections with clients. Along the way, Sharma realized that this strategy, which increased clients’ trust and the firm’s impact, was also critical to Censeo’s organizational culture.

Rob O'Neill: Why Pentagon should abandon social experiments from YouTube · High Definition · Duration: 2 minutes 44 seconds · 6,000+ views · uploaded on 1/15/2017 · uploaded by Fox News



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