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Blog Posted in avatar   Judy White's Blog

What Drives You?

By Judy White
Posted Apr 24, 2011 in Business
Imagine being at the pinnacle of your career. You have transformed an international organization into a $71 billion conglomerate and now, at the young age of 73 are looking forward to retirement. Suddenly the option of retirement is postponed as you are faced with one of the most difficult challenges of your career. The business environment has not only become increasingly hostile, but the very government under which you operate your businesses is facing allegations of corruption. This is the all too present reality for Ratan Tata, Chairman of the Tata Group; one of the world’s best known Indian companies boasting brands such as Jaguar, Land Rover, the Pierre Hotel in New York, and Tetley Tea. The daunting task for Ratan Tata is to enable his global operations in over 40 countries, employing approximately 3,000 employees, to remain focused on sustaining key objectives and navigating the new political waters.
The heart of the Chairman and his employees has always remained focused on one purpose; to be a high performing organization and positively impact India’s poor by giving back. Their passion and commitment permeate every business division proving that a devoted culture and people can affect positive change in the lives of others through selflessly serving. While maintaining a value driven organizational culture, Mr. Tata and his highly dedicated workforce are striving to expand a domestic growth strategy in the midst of governmental dysfunction. Together Mr. Tata and his key investors and employees, along with many fellow business leaders, are working in unison with a deep resolve to protect a heritage built on leadership, trust, growth, and caring for India’s poor communities. Mr. Tata and those committed to the task at hand know what corporate responsibility and community are. They are living it out and taking a stand for what they believe to be right. How would people describe your culture, your community?
It’s a New World
Becoming one at work requires CEOs, and senior executive teams to place top priority on the organizational principles that will lead their businesses into the future. Perhaps we need to take down the values we have hanging on our office walls and analyze their applicability for what’s ahead. Thriving organizational cultures lead. They do not replicate nor are they duplicates, because at the end of the day, organizations are about people propelling toward the future. People who are working together as a community; a community that will leave a lasting footprint upon the world. What will that footprint be? What will it communicate to the world? Will it say that our diverse workforce of individuals each brought something special that contributed to the good of the organization; to the good of the world? Were individual’s unique talents, strengths and potential embraced?
What collective values will you and your workforce determine as best for the
How does living out these values become the first principle in leading a healthy
workplace community?
When might you consider changes in workplace culture necessary? The following situations signal that change should be a high priority.
- Desire to lead your respective industry.
- A new business strategy responding to global expansion or loss in industry market
- Financial performance is weak and/or declining.
- Surveys and leading vital signs, or indicators, identify disturbing workforce trends;
and/or customer satisfaction indexes are low.
- Unable to attract leading talent from outside of your organization.
How will you drive your organization forward?