Continual growth, excellent staff retention, and, of course, profitability are the hallmarks of a successful business. But, what leads a company along the path to success? Culture expert Jay Doran believes three things unite all exceptional businesses; A willingness to embrace conflict, a growth mindset, and a well-defined corporate culture.
Of the three, says Jay Doran, defining culture – and making it a fundamental part of everyday working life – is key. He’s the CEO and visionary mind behind Culture Matters, an advisory firm that helps companies succeed and grow without losing sight of core values. Jay says, “the margin of profit in knowing your culture is related to how employees interact with each other and their customers. More profit is the result of more productive interactions.” When a company has a clearly defined corporate culture it unifies employees, creates a harmonious working environment, and increases staff retention. Having a growth mindset and being willing to embrace conflict are essential in defining culture – and embedding it into all facets of a business.
For Jay Doran, companies with an open-minded approach to inclusivity and diversity of thought are the ones that flourish. For him, conflict is not something to be avoided. He believes that when approached maturely, conflict is a useful tool to help organizations learn and grow. He says, “Learning takes stress. If the ‘collective we’ is going to understand culture, then they must do this through open conflict.” Jay uses conflict as a way to better understand a counterpart’s beliefs, thoughts, and point of view. However, he adds, “Stress needs responsibility so that a culture does not break down, so people do not break down.”
This ability to welcome diversity of thought underpins a growth mindset. Successful companies recognize the value in continually challenging working and social norms. According to Jay Doran, these companies will continue to adapt to market changes and keep moving forward. His obsession with culture stems from a personal aim to “live a life helping people think, act and do in more beneficial ways.”. Specifically, this involves working with senior leaders to solve problems in the context of productivity, strategy, turnover, profit, and brand alignment. He is on a mission to help companies understand that great corporate culture goes beyond free coffee Fridays and annual gym memberships. It is instead woven deeply into the fundamental fabric of a business.
Defining culture is not an easy task, but it gives an enormous return on investment. As Jay Doran says, “Cultural development beyond catchphrases or buzzwords takes serious and methodical work. But, the payoff is exponential both financially and emotionally.” For Jay, it’s the ultimate key to successful business, and companies with a growth mindset that embrace conflict will reap the rewards.