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What does it take to have a great culture? Is there even a formula that we can duplicate? Or it's just an intuitive and a once-in-a-lifeline anomaly? Well, it turned out that we can make use of the patterns that good organizations and groups have in common.
“Belonging cues are behaviors that create safe connection in groups. They include, among others, proximity, eye contact, energy, mimicry, turn taking, attention, body language, vocal pitch, consistency of emphasis, and whether everyone talks to everyone else in the group.”
Safety is an important enabler that allows us to do great work. A work environment in which you feel safe in acting as you naturally would and speaking your mind is very conducive to group work. It’s only natural: you don’t want to keep looking over your back all the time.
“Vulnerability doesn’t come after trust—it precedes it. Leaping into the unknown, when done alongside others, causes the solid ground of trust to materialize beneath our feet.”
Jeff Polzer, a researcher of organizational behavior at Harvard, found that when we share our own flaws with others, something amazing happens. He calls it a vulnerability loop.
Vulnerability not just increases trust, it’s also a way to show acceptance. If you admit no one’s perfect, people will feel okay even after making mistakes, which are inevitable in accomplishing a shared goal.
“When we hear a fact, a few isolated areas of our brain light up, translating words and meanings. When we hear a story, however, our brain lights up like Las Vegas, tracing the chains of cause, effect, and meaning. Stories are not just stories; they are the best invention ever created for delivering mental models that drive behavior.”
It’s the sum of all beliefs and values among a team, as they relate to achieving a common goal. The goal is in the future, but a group lives in the now. PURPOSE should be like a bridge between the two.
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