Leadership And Corporate Culture [White Paper]

Published on 13-08-2018

Digitalisation, automatization and a shift in generations – those and other global forces are currently reshaping the world of work as we know it. The new position of leadership within a company’s culture will play an essential role in this process. CompanyMatch published a new white paper about this topic where we explore this issue in-depth. Download it now!

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This white paper will focus on the current state of leadership, its future and how it correlates with corporate culture. Furthermore, it will discuss the necessary methods that need to be taken in order to integrate a purposeful leadership style. This information, as well as advice, is based on recent scientific studies as well as internal CompanyMatch research.

The Current State Of Leadership

Every aspect of leadership – from strategy and assessment to leadership development and program evaluation – needs to adapt to current transformations and innovations. Furthermore, a growing leadership gap of society puts additional pressure on organizations around the world.

Filling The Leadership Gap Of Society

Across the globe, people start trusting businesses more than the government. Organisations are expected to fill this increasing gap of leadership within the society. The 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer shows that only 43 percent of people worldwide believe in the government to “do what is right” – 52 percent trust businesses to do so.

Those expectations put a lot of pressure on companies and their CSR strategies. However, it also creates opportunities: Organisations that actively engage with people and demonstrate that they are trustworthy can build a strong reputation, establish valuable partnerships and influence traditional public policy mechanisms. This does not only affect a company’s external operations but also their employer brand, which is a crucial element to attract, hire and retain top talent. 69% of participants in an Allegis Group Services Study (2014) would not take a job with a company that has a bad reputation. This showcases the importance of a well-established employer brand as well as its communication with candidates. Future leaders, therefore, need to not only manage external and social expectations but also pay close attention to internal gaps and demands. But how?

True leadership lies in guiding others to success – in ensuring that everyone is performing at their best, doing the work they are pledged to do and doing it well. – Bill Owens

The Importance Of Leadership Development

Leadership development programs are the cornerstone of both, high engagement and optimal performance. For leadership to be effective, it must be built on a solid foundation. In addition, leaders need to need specific skills and attributes to achieve the goals of a company effectively. These traits include for example:

  • empathy
  • excellent communication skills
  • team-building skills
  • critical thinking skills

No person is born with all those skills but develops them over time. It is important to understand that leadership skills can be learned and further improved at any stage of an employee’s career. Organisations, thus, need to further improve their leadership development programs to successfully identify, assess and develop leaders, especially concerning millennial talent.


Leadership Of Tomorrow

The business landscape is becoming more competitive, the war for talent continues and digitalization disrupts many areas. This causes organizations to become more team-centric, networked, and agile to be capable of adapting to change effectively. The trend shows that we are moving away from a pyramid-shaped style of leadership towards a flatter, culture-based approach. A purposeful leadership style, as well as organizational agility, are key elements to establish a future-proofed organization.

The leaders that we respect, the leaders that are considered to be role models, are servant leaders. They are collaborative leaders. They are purposeful leaders. – Josh Bersin –

Purposeful Leadership Style

In the last decade, so-called “purposeful organizations” started to enter and redefine the work field. Generally, the construct of purposeful leadership consists out of three parts that are in strong correlation with one another:

  • a strong moral self
  • a vision for his or her team
  • the commitment of stakeholders

A purposeful leader needs to have strong personal moral values that align with the vision and mission of an organization. Only a leader believes in the moral and ethical obligations of a company, he or she is able to communicate those effectively with employees. This will create a common goal the team aims to achieve together. This kind of mission-driven approach is highly rewarding: Studies have shown that “mission-driven” companies have 30% higher levels of innovation and 40% higher levels of retention, and they tend to be first or second in their market segment (Deloitte, 2015).

But how can we translate a purposeful leadership style in real life? And what role does organizational agility play within this process? Our white paper has the answers!


Cultural fit as a competitive advantage.

Corporate Culture & Leadership

By offering employees a sense of purpose and belonging, an organization’s productivity and performance can be enhanced, primarily through the establishment of a strong, positive company culture. Similar to the idea of having a cultural mismatch of an employee, even the most competent leaders will fail if their personal values and behaviors don’t align with those of their organization.

The only thing of real importance that leaders do is to create and manage culture. If you do not manage culture, it manages you, and you may not even be aware of the extent to which this is happening. – Edgar Schein

Cultural Fit As A Competitive Advantage

A strong culture is a clear competitive advantage – not only in terms of sale and generating revenue but also in the field of talent acquisition. According to a Deloitte study, 94% of executives and 88% of employees believe a distinct workplace culture is important for a business’ success. This also affects the way we hire: For candidates, it is more relevant that their values, beliefs, and personality match those of the company than their compensation and benefit.

The cultural fit of leaders is just as essential. A recent Gallup report (2016) shows that employees who are supervised by highly engaged managers are 59% more likely to be engaged than those supervised by actively disengaged managers. However, the same report also highlights that currently only 35% of managers are engaged, 51% are not engaged and 14% are actively disengaged. This attitude has direct consequences on employee engagement and decreases an organization’s productivity and performance. How can we solve this issue?

The complete edition of the new CompanyMatch white paper “Leadership And Corporate Culture” will provide you with an extensive insight into the topic and answer many unsolved questions. Please do fill out the form to start the free download.

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