NWOS 53: How culture impacts revenue performance, with Aga Bajer

Table of Content

Hello there!

Let’s talk … culture.

I recently had a conversation about the impact of culture on revenue performance with Aga Bajer, the number 1 culture voice on LinkedIn.

Spoiler alert… culture is heavily impacting revenue performance.

While revenue strategy is setting up the system on what to do to achieve your goals, culture defines how good you will perform in doing so.

This is my thinking: Strategy is action based, culture defines how you will act, so strategy is culture.

In other words, high performance cultures will easily and quickly achieve your goals, while toxic culture won’t reach your goals.

Here you have the links to the full episode (only 38 mins):

YouTube | Spotify | Apple Podcast

As I said, culture heavily impacts revenue.

In my book Jump I quoted the Heskett & Kotter study demonstrating that high performance cultures had a 765% growth compared with other cultures (1%) growth.

And so… let’s go!

the Three Pillars of high performance cultures

What is Agas view on this?

She heavily research the topic, and she uncovered that 3 pillars help defining a high performance culture:

Those are Fun, Meaning & Belonging.

These pillars are crucial for both employee well-being as well as organisational success.

Exploring each pillar individually, what surprised me is that Aga confirmed that Maslow pyramid is not based on science. Belonging should be at the bottom of the pyramid as a fundamental human need.

Humans are social creatures, and are fundamental to a good functioning human being.

Meaning emphasises the importance of feeling one’s work has impact. People crave significance in their work, wanting to know their contributions make a difference.

Aga emphasises the importance of employees feeling valued and recognised for their impact, regardless of scale.

And the last one, with fun, Aga is not talking about the superficial fun -like Friday pizza parties but about deep fun, which involves finding joy in the work itself.

Deep fun fosters engagement and facilitates peak performance.

Building a high performance culture in startups

In the beginning everything might seem ‘random’, but there are 2 things you can do to remove the randomness:

  • Aligning culture with your personal values as a founder
  • Intentionally working on defining and embedding your desired culture.

With this you can create systems and support structures, and invest in leaders who embody and reinforce cultural values.

Leadership’s Role in Culture

And with this we move to another crucial topic… Leadership’s impact on organisational culture.

Investing in selecting and developing leaders who align with desired cultural values is crucial for cultivating a thriving organisational culture.

The right leaders prevent silos and foster cross-functional collaboration.

But not just this, they are also crucial in hiring people that will fit in, and will contribute to a high performance culture.

By the way, noone should be hiring people for ‘culture fit’. It leads to hiring ‘people like us’ and groupthink.

In my opinion, every hire should add and enrich the culture (without disrupting the values of the organisation). You can find the right hires with behavioural interviews.

And this is it for the topic this week.

Want to know more?

I wrote a book called Jump a while ago, and I go very deep in the topic of culture. You can find the book here US / UK, on Amazon.

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