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Culture add

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If you’re in a position to influence culture - which (spoiler alert) you are if you choose to be - then you probably despise complacency. You preach inclusion. And you push for creativity.

Your main priority is, no doubt, to break through bureaucracy so that the environment in which you seek change is effected in an upward trajectory. In other words, everyone wants the same thing: progress, growth, and prosperity, yet we keep doing the same things over and over to get there—insane!

If we truly want what we say we want, then why do we keep doing things that don’t work?

If we want new ideas and fresh eyes, then why are we not listening to those who have them or seeing those who view things differently?

If we really want a culture of diversity, inclusion, and originality, then why do we insist on culture ‘fits’ instead of culture ‘adds?’

Now, if your definition of a culture fit is someone who adds value in a unique way, then, by all means, hire culture fits. But for everyone else, why is it so important that you hire someone who looks like, acts like, and talks like everyone else in the office? People from similar backgrounds think the same. They probably perform at similar levels as well; which, might be good for the short term but that’s not how innovation happens.

Innovation happens when new ideas are introduced and executed. New ideas come from a variety of different places—oh wait, that’s it! Of course, new ideas and methods can come from culture ‘fits,’ but there is something special that happens when a culture ‘add’ is thrown into the mix.

Here’s the thing, finding culture fits is a predictable model. It’s something all growing organizations are looking for (and when i say ‘growth’ I mean ‘revenue’). But the organizations that want real growth, the kind that sticks, that makes a difference, that matters, are the ones that find culture ‘adds’ (this time, when I say ‘growth,’ I mean ‘the process of developing or maturing’).

So what does it mean when you say someone isn’t a culture fit? What is your culture? And why wouldn’t they fit in?

Another question: what’s so great about your culture that you literally wouldn’t want to change anything about it? Wouldn’t you beg for people who add value? Add substance? Add depth? Add culture?

Then invest in culture ‘adds.’