Having thought about this long and hard and read a multitude of opinions and research, I think that we are genuinely over complicating the process of running a successful business.
I believe it boils down to 3 core ingredients:
- Having a solid, value-based proposition/product
- Implementing an agile and structured approach (yes, the two can live side by side) to deliver the proposition/product
- Creating the right culture to inspire and motivate both employees and customers to have a relationship with the proposition/product.
The first 2 elements are the most tangible and widely understood with a number of well-proven approaches to achieve them. The third element, culture, is where we generally struggle. It dawned on me this morning that the answer is within our grasp.
I was looking at the research on the countries which ranked in the top 10 for happiness and there are some common characteristics, as you would expect:
- A sense of community
- Good work/life balance
- High level of education/intellectual stimulation
- A high level of engagement and care about their country.
These elements are the building blocks for a culture within an organisation.
If the management focus for a business includes culture on an equal footing with financial and employee performance, I genuinely think everything else will flow.