426: Five Lies About Corporate Culture, with Ginger Hardage

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Ginger Hardage: Unstoppable Cultures

Ginger Hardage is the former senior vice president of culture at Southwest Airlines. She led a team responsible for building and sustaining the organization’s legendary culture and communications enterprise, resulting in 23 consecutive years on Fortune’s list of Top 10 Most Admired Companies in the World.

Today, Ginger leads Unstoppable Cultures, a firm designed to help organizations create and sustain cultures of enduring greatness. She facilitates the annual Unstoppable Cultures Fellowship to help leaders of all kinds take practical steps to create the culture that will help their organization thrive.

In this conversation, Ginger and I discuss the five lies she’s seen come up again and again in her work with leaders who are struggling with culture. Perhaps most importantly, Ginger emphasizes that leaders need not accept the default culture, but should work to define the culture.

Key Points

The five lies Ginger has uncovered about culture:

  1. Culture is someone else’s job.
  2. Our values are on the wall.
  3. Culture is fluffy.
  4. If I empower my employees, I might lose control.
  5. We can’t afford culture.

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