Building a culture of trust has become a high strategic priority for CEOs

Have you built a road map for 2018 to create a culture-rich organization with every communication? Culture fosters trust and innovation, enhances your company’s brand, and can help ensure your organization thrives in today’s data-driven, disruptive environment.

Culture eats strategy for breakfast.”

- Peter Drucker

CEOs are being stretched to keep pace and evolve in an environment where disruption is inextricably linked to their growth strategy. How are they adapting to the new challenges on their data-driven dashboards? By building a culture of trust.

A recent KPMG company survey reveals, “A significant majority (70%) are more open to new influences and collaborations than at any other point in their career.” This requires CEOs to acquire new skills, expand their knowledge, and invite and challenge new influences while simultaneously balancing innovation with pragmatism.

The survey also shows that only 65% of CEOs feel confident about global economic growth due to heightened uncertainty of the ever-changing geopolitical landscape. As a result, building a culture of trust has become a high strategic priority.

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While culture might seem a nebulous concept, many companies have explicit measurable and tangible data that link behaviors to outcomes. The cultural tone is set from the board and cascades from the top down. The recent Equifax breach highlights the negative effect of a “top-down culture.”

Values drive culture. Attitudes and mindsets drive beliefs, and beliefs drive behavior.

As a leader, here are some questions you may want to ask yourself to identify how well these elements are understood and executed across your organization:

  • How is your organization cascading the values of clients, leadership, individual commitment, and collaboration down to the organization from the top level?
  • What common language is used to support the desired ways of working?
  • To what extent do you own setting the tone of culture in your organization?
  • How engaged and committed are your people?
  • How do people make decisions when they have personal or organizational value conflicts?
  • How are interventions or cultures being sustained?

When the CEO and other executives make their cultures relevant for their people across the globe and reinforce the values of the organization, people will bring the culture to life.

Peter Drucker had it right when he said, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” Both must be aligned.


Lindsey Coen-Fernandez

As a global leadership facilitator and coach, Lindsey has more than 20 years of experience as a business leader and entrepreneur.

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