Culture sets certain expectations of behavior, and once accepted, there is no deviation. Even if you are removed from the cultural origin, these behaviors are ingrained and follow long after.
I recently experienced this first hand, when a dear friend of mine was diagnosed with cancer. Of course, I was very distraught. When, a few weeks later, he was admitted to hospital for surgery, I visited him and his wonderful wife. This was natural to me, visiting a sick or injured friend at home or in the hospital, is not only a kind gesture, but is an expected social obligation ingrained in me since childhood. What seemed to my friends as a thoughtful gesture was something I could not imagine not doing, or imagine friends of my culture not doing for me.
It made me wonder what makes a behavior “culturally” accepted and ingrained? When did visiting a sick friend become more than a thoughtful gesture, and cross the barrier into social obligation? How did this transition occur?
These musings extended to Oil and Gas corporate culture. What behaviors were so ingrained at work that they had become second nature? Did they serve a purpose, such as to improve data quality? If not, what would it take to weave in these behaviors, and make them the expected social norm, and a clear moral obligation or expected practice within an organization? In an ideal world, these cultural obligations would lead to employees and employers alike feeling that it is “on them” to report and correct data quality issues, no matter at what point in the process they were discovered.
I thought it might be a good idea to ask my readers these questions. Are such behaviors ingrained in your workplace deep enough to be considered cultural? How would you weave them in, if not? If they are a part of your corporate culture, can you point to any policies and practices that may have led to this?