Culture is Key to a Company’s Success and Legacy- Look at Ford

Legacy is greater than currency. – @garyvee

With the recent announcement of Mark Fields to be Alan Mulally’s successor at Ford one of the first things that came to my mind was the culture Mulally created at the once beleaguered company. Will it stay the same? I believe it will. Why? Because Mulally created what he calls “The One Ford Plan”.

One Ford (1)

It’s a culture in which every employee at Ford believes in whole hardheartedly. Every decision they make all goes back to their unofficial mission statement, “Opening the Highways to All Mankind”.

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Fields who at one time was the automaker’s Chief Operating Officer was an advocate of Mulally’s revised collaborative management style culture.

Mulally’s success all goes back to the culture he instituted at Ford. Why? Because it created teamwork, a sense of ownership for employees at every level and when you have that sense of ownership you have the passion you need to make and stick with when making the tough decisions. Success is set by example and it comes from the top. Mulally created a positive, engaging environment of inclusion and empowerment. The hiring of Fields, an “insider” is key to the future success of Ford because he is not only an advocate of the culture Mulally built but he an instrumental leader in that culture by helping cut the company’s US division out of deep losses.

Culture is important to employees because you want them to be happy in the environment they work in. I have seen high turnovers in my various jobs in local news when the boss was toxic, holed up in his office or the employees were nasty and backstabbing. They were allowed to be like that because of the culture that was instituted at the news organization and the lack of leadership which allowed such behavior. A successful, healthy culture and strong leader would not stand for that.

Money while a great motivator is not the key to a successful culture. Of course it helps to be recognized and be awarded for achievements and hard work, but culture is the glue that fortify s a company and workforce. A weak culture will leave a company and employees floundering in a sea of uncertainty. Culture is the wind in a company’s sails.

Looking for more inspiration, leadership strategies and lessons? Please order a hard copy or Kindle version of my book Opportunity Knocking Lessons from Business Leaders

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