Engagement and Growth: Begins with a Balanced Culture

Healthy Culture

I recently visited a high school that has invested years teaching their students to be activists.

While that effort alone is impressive.  The uncommon skill they are teaching, and modeling for the students is even more so.

Through instruction and experience, their students are learning that a healthy culture is a balanced culture.  And that in a balanced culture it is possible to think critically and to be compassionate.

They are learning how to shine a bright light on truth with data and personal experiences.  …While getting involved with, and loving people that have made choices they disagree with.

They are engaging people and growing their cause because of their unique approach.  And the impact they are having on the students, families and the community is beyond impressive.

What those students and their families may not realize:

  • Is that it is uncommon it is to learn to balance challenging concepts.
  • This skill will benefit every part of their lives in the years to come.  (As individuals. with their families, in the businesses and non profits they will serve and within the communities and nation they will live in.)

Now imagine the cultures you are a part of: 

Are Truth and Love strategically poured into the foundation and the future?

Organizational HealthIs Vision balanced with Ownership?

  • Do you have a vision?
  • Does everyone know why it is important? And how they impact the vision?
  • Is it clearly and frequently communicated both internally and externally?
  • Is that vision used to guide decisions or to decorate walls?
  • Are all teams measured on goals that support that vision – or are they forced to fight each other and work against the vision to accomplish their objectives?
  • How often do they experience uncommon synergy and results?
  • Are all people empowered and unleashed to bring their best to your organization?
  • Does everyone listen to and respond to your customers, members or citizens?

Is EVERYONE unleashed to make the greatest difference possible?

When that happens, people at every level take ownership of the opportunities they see and:

  • Individuals have more freedom, energy, commitment and growth
  • Teams experience greater collaboration, synergy, engagement and results
  • Customers are valued, honored, and continually amazed

Is Accountability balanced with Compassion?

Are all wafts of smoke followed to the source and fires are extinguished before they spread?

Do Smoke-Chasers:

  • Seek the whole truth about opportunities in the organization?
  • Weigh everything against the company vision, mission and values?
  • Confront internal barriers that are preventing titled leaders from listening and responding to employees or from communicating & problem solving with peers?
  • Balance consistency with fairness in their conversations and decision making?
  • Treat people with respect – regardless of their title, personality style or behavior?
  • Address inappropriate behavior – “Boss babies” grow up or leave, Manipulators change or go?
  • Help their organizations overcome challenges and grow:  Often reducing risk, increasing efficiency and maximizing results without added expense?

SynergyThose who build strong balanced cultures are rewarded with uncommon:  

  • Engagement: Their people are committed, and energized.
  • Growth: Because they’re leveraging the wisdom and passion of many.

President, Giana Consulting

Chery Gegelman is an adventurer that loves to learn. ...Deep conversations, books, travel, and daily living are all food for growth.

As a speaker, facilitator and workshop leader she creates energizing environments that reflect God's grace, tear down walls, help people to consider new perspectives, and inspire change.

Chery is the Founder of Giana Consulting and Conversation Safari's, listed as a Great Leadership Speaker by Inc., writes a recognized leadership blog and has co-authored two leadership books.

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3 thoughts on “Engagement and Growth: Begins with a Balanced Culture

  1. Excellent post Chery! Love all your questions in helping us see how to drill down on the culture we want to create. I especially relate to the idea of balancing accountability with compassion. Both are critical to cultivating a balanced culture. Too often I have worked with titled leaders who forget that empathy and compassion are essential to building meaningful work relationships.

    Thanks Chery!

    • Thank you Terri! I agree with you – compassion and accountability in balance is one of my favorite concepts on this list. Like you I’ve seen many titled leaders forget about compassion as they hold people accountable. I’ve also seen many be so compassionate that accountability never happens. Both destroy.

  2. Great concepts presented here, Chery! I love the idea of a balanced culture that is introduced into the classroom…the key phrase here is “balanced culture.” Too often we wind up people to be activists and send them off without equipping them with the tools to understand (or even hear) the other side of the issue. Some things are 100% wrong, but even then we need to strive to understand what has contributed to that mindset so we can help them move on. Empathy is something that will always help us create an environment that sticks to its guns and yet allows people the humanity to be who they are…and then help them change.