Recognise This: A little careful pruning and nurturing goes a long way in managing your company culture.

I’m thrilled to appear on the cover of the March/April 2011 issue of Engagement Strategies Magazine. In the Q&A-style article, "Authenticity, Tree-Pruning and the ‘Wisdom of Crowds’," I explain the critical link between employee recognition, employee engagement and managing your company culture.

A couple of excerpts:

ESM: What you see as the link between recognition and engagement? Is a “culture of recognition” really necessary to create an engaging work environment?
Irvine: The link, as I see it, is that recognition is the fastest way to employee engagement. There are many different contributory factors, but I would contend that recognition is one of the fastest and most efficient in the overall armory of tools that people have available to boost employee engagement.

Click through to read the case study example I share of why this is true.

I also comment on the importance of proactively managing your culture:

Companies have to ask themselves: “Are we managing our culture, or is our culture managing us?” There’s a lot of debate out there as to whether culture is manageable or not. But I would say culture is a bit like a bonsai tree. It can be steadfast and strong, but it requires deliberate nurturing in order for it to grow in a particular way. If you aren’t careful about your tree, if you cut it the wrong way or neglect it; you can create a rather ugly looking tree – or culture.

Do you agree? Is culture something that can be directly managed, or only endured? Is recognition the fastest way to engagement?

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