Sunday, January 25, 2009

Developing a Culture

There was a fascinating article in the Sunday January 11th San Francisco Chronicle Business Section. Wells Fargo’s CEO John Stumpf was discussing how the bank planned to merge the assets of Wachovia which Wells had recently acquired with those of his bank.

He said that the similarities between the two companies were such that they were almost mirror images of each other. He went on to say that more importantly their cultures were very similar. “And culture is very, very important. Culture, I define it as knowing what to do and how to behave without having a rulebook. Both companies have a deep respect for their employees, a passion about serving customers, are very involved in their communities and want to provide above average to great returns for shareholders.”

He was then asked how he will measure whether or not he is successful. His answer follows: “It is really very simple. How well we do in four constituencies: Are we keeping customers; are we growing relationships in households? Are we retaining our team; is our team engaged, happy if you will? Are we investing in our communities? Are we providing great returns for shareholders?”

We think this is a fine blueprint for any swim organization. By changing the words to fit our group we can ask ourselves very similar questions and measure how effective we are.

Additionally, we really liked the phrase “how to behave without a rulebook.” Let us know what you think. Have a great week at the pool!

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