— 2 min read
One tricky question I like to ask to people working at a company in hiring spree is: "how do you preserve the team culture in this situation?".
Some claim that they are keeping up the startup spirit, things are not that different, it has started on solid foundations and now it goes without saying with the new onboarded.
The main assumption that a culture can be preserved is flawed. Even though we wish magical things happening in a small group of people to scale indefinitely, culture evolves constantly as people come and go from a team.
We can consider the culture of a company as the sum of habits of the individuals that are part of it. A bit like the individual's personality is dictated by his behavior and habits. Company values are not what you write on a wall, they are the day-by-day of the organization, some of them are evident others are more hidden (so called shadow values) but equally important.
Leaders are accountable for establishing a culture that fits that particular stage of the company.
As with personal habits, it is possible to build and cultivate new habit loops for a company applying the logics described by James Clear:
“the cue triggers a craving, which motivates a response, which provides a reward, which satisfies the craving and, ultimately, becomes associated with the cue.” Excerpt From Atomic Habits - James Clear
Examples of habits at work: