Change or die. Manage change, or change will manage you. Stay relevant. When bizdev stalls, or when massive growth threatens the bottom line, use these five principles of culture change to keep yourself and your business on the grow.

1. Culture Change Depends on Strategic Alignment

There’s no getting around the fact that “Culture Change” is a really big concept. Your company culture is worth fighting for because while leaders come and go, well-built cultures endure. Perhaps most important is this: Cultures happen no matter what. If you don’t manage culture, culture will manage you.

Improving your company culture starts with knowing what success looks like. What is the big picture vision of your business, and how will your business change the world? Practically speaking, your vision should be unattainable. My personal vision is “Anyone who wants to learn anything is able to do so, for free.” Practically speaking, I know this can never come true. But that’s my vision just the same. When I close my eyes, that’s what I see. My vision is why you’re reading this article right now.

Your company Vision Statement should inform your strategic plan and your day-to-day decisions. Organizations with a clearly defined vision ask themselves: Is what we’re doing right now in alignment with our vision? Without a vision statement (and mission statement and a list of core values), your culture change is unlikely to be successful.

2. Build Your Culture Change Strategic Plan To Last

You’re going to need help leading culture change. Lots of help. That starts with getting the right people on the bus, as they say. Take some time to identify your planning team, organize a pre-planning meeting, and agree on your Vision, Mission and Values. Select a facilitator to maximize the contributions of the team members. A truly professional facilitator can provide you with a Strategic Plan Template to make sure that you’re surfacing the best, most impactful ideas, and getting everything in a format that’s usable. Finalize the plan and roll it out to the team.

3. Alignment With Your Business Plan

Armed with your Strategic Plan, the next step in culture change is the creation – or revision – of a Business Plan. It doesn’t have to be fancy. As a matter of fact, most businesses can do quite nicely with a well-structured One Page Plan. The basics are: Examine the past, study the present, design the future, develop strategies and action plans, then set 30-day and quarterly goals. Your business coach or consultant should have a simple One Page Plan template for you to build on. You down with, um, that?

4. Implement Your Plan Using a System of Accountability

Accountability is the silver bullet of culture change. When you communicate your vision and plan throughout the organization, everyone has a the same set of guiding principles. Create Goal Boss Teams, implement Goals and Key Metrics, and use Team Problem Solving to stay out of the weeds.

5. Measure Results, Adjust, Repeat

The definition of Controlling is to compare performance to objectives and take any appropriate action. Regular, structured team meetings (we’re partial to Goal Boss Meetings) allow for expert tracking of Goals and Key Metrics, helping you ensure that your team stays aligned, accountable, excited about results, and productive. Sharing results, recognizing high performing teammates, and celebrating successes will keep your culture change on track. It works when you involve the whole team from the start.

About Will Pemble

Will Pemble has an extensive background building and selling multi-million dollar companies. Drawing from his rich and accurate insights, Will created the Goal Boss Leadership System to help others achieve accelerated growth and operational excellence. His proprietary software, management process, and proven mechanisms of change create sustained growth and development for organizations. Learn more at