Helena Nordenfelt // December 13 2018
Advent calendar – 2018 Memory Lane – 13: Culture day in Stockholm
Every company has a culture. It is formed by the people within the organization. As a company you can do your best to encourage the behaviour you want to see more of and cherish the co-workers that act that way. But in the end it is up to all of us to decide how we act and treat one another and our clients. At Grow+Digitalist here in Stockholm we decided to make time for everyone to express their thoughts around this topic and get to know each other as our two companies are merging (we are in the middle of it right now! In Stockholm, where the physical merger is happening, we have just moved into the same office space.)
We decided to kick it off with a culture day!
The aspiration was to to talk about what culture and values mean to us as individuals, how different and often similar ways we view things. The culture is of course going to be there despite instructions or not, so to guide us we have what we call the EPIC culture – the defined culture we want to have, and we have a set of values and behaviours that we think will lead to that culture. The idea is that combining the two and discussing those in relation to each other would really help us understand what is wanted, needed and valued both by the company and by each other.
During the culture day we played a lot of games, discussions, ate some candy and did some other exercises with the sole purpose of exploring and getting more knowledge about each other, creating trust, curiosity and giving the feelings of empowerment that we are building this new, joint culture together. The result was a lot of hard work, small disagreements, great input and feedback, much laughter and of course a lot of understanding that even though we come from separate cultures, and though we might have preconceived opinions, we are also very much alike.
I believe this culture day was the most important event of this year, as it helped us to grasp what we value in order to to create a company where we all want to stay. It is so important to give ourselves the time to talk about the acts and behaviours that make us a place we are proud of, where we trust one another and deliver great things!
A culture will always be formed and guidance can help giving the direction, but in the end it is up to you, me and all of us to create it. To me, that is inspiring.