organizational culture

Keep it Secret. Keep it Safe.

It happened during a workshop I was leading on creativity for a board of trustees at a small college. A suggestion came up—and I don’t even remember what it was—that was new. It was something this group had never contemplated. As the group discussed the idea, one could sense a growing enthusiasm. Then one of the senior members of the group hopped out of his chair and, through clenched teeth, declared, “I will NEVER go…

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To Trust or Not to Trust

Jesus said, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me” (John 14:1). There is an epidemic of mistrust in our nation. Need I list the evidence of this? I don’t think so. Just look around; nobody trusts anyone today. If this trend is not somehow reversed, it could mark the demise of our culture. Trust is foundational to all human interaction. Without it, we can accomplish nothing. There is…

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Layers of Culture

I was working on a section of a course I am preparing for Mid-Atlantic Christian University to be taught this fall — you can find more information at — This was the first time I have added a voice-over sound file to a presentation that I uploaded to So, I thought I’d share it with you as this week’s post.   Transcript Like an iceberg, you cannot fully understand an organization’s culture unless…

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Pic of angry man

From Ideal to Real: How to Close the Values Gap

Values are deeply held beliefs about ultimate desired outcomes and how to achieve them. We all have them; unfortunately, what we say we value often does not match what our behavior says we value. This is the difference between ideal values and real values. The one we use to justify and explain our behavior; the other actually drives our behavior. Not only individuals, but also organizations often proclaim one set of values while their behavior…

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Neon sign that says "Words"

New Words, New Culture

“Say what?” That’s the expression we use when we don’t understand something someone has said and we suspect that, if we did understand it, we wouldn’t like it. Language is essential to organizational culture. Fortunately, words provide us with some handles we can use to influence an organization’s culture. Leadership is all about culture development and transformation. In his excellent book, Organizational Culture and Leadership, Edgar Schein says that the processes of culture creation and…

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  • Psalm 25:14-15 October 17, 2021
    “The LORD confides in those who fear him; he makes his covenant known to them. My eyes are ever on the LORD, for only he will release my feet from the snare.”
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