Companywide Assessment Essay

811 Words 4 Pages
Assessing Your Firm's Culture by Stewart Levine
July 2005
It is a pleasure to present this cultural assessment instrument. I have been thinking about designing an instrument for a few years. Bill Veltrop, a respected colleague, www.TheInfiniteGames.org, and his Rainbow Lenses served as my muse and provided some of the scaling I hope I have put into a very useable and useful format.
I have been thinking about how firm culture, communication skills, levels of conflict, quality of relationships, operational agreements and productivity relate are related to each other. In a somewhat inspired conversation with Bill we realized that culture played a critical role in the success and quality of any enterprise, weather it produced widgets,
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Thank you for your candor.
The prevailing attitude people have toward others in the firm:
1. I will defeat you
2. I will use you
3. You scratch my back, I will scratch yours
4. We are partners
5. We are for each other and for the whole
The prevailing philosophy of most people in the firm is:
1. Do unto others before they do unto you
2. Do unto others because everyone is doing it
3. Do unto others in a way that is fair
4. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you
5. Do for all in a way that best serves all
The prevailing belief system in our firm is:
1. Might makes right, winning is everything
2. It’s a tough competitive world
3. We need to compromise
4. Strategic partnership is possible
5. All stakeholders served means sustainable growth
The quality of our agreements and keeping promises is:
1. Tacit, dysfunctional, hostile, co-dependent
2. Legalistic and/or haphazard
3. Intent, roles and promises clear
4. Intent, roles, promises clear and effective accountability loops in place
5. Intent, roles, promises clear and effective self-improving and self-evolving accountability loops in place
The quality of listening in our firm is:
1. Stereotyping and discounting
2. Distracted and impatient
3. Focused and non-judgmental
4. Active and appreciative
5. Draws out the genius in others
The quality of inquiry is:
1. Punitive
2. Cross-examination
3. Purposeful exploration
4. Clarifying and integrity evoking
5. Co-creative

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