3 leadership skills crucial for a culture change

Every organization undergoes periods of necessary culture change to promote growth, competition and success. However, changing the culture of an organization is no easy task. The initiative for change requires focus, accountability and consistency, as well as a complete buy-in from the senior leadership team, according to Forbes.

Here are the three skills a leader must have to initiate culture change:

Be a change leader:

A successful change in culture stems from a leader-led model. Change begins at the very top. Every move a leader makes either supports or undermines the process. Senior leadership must take an active role in the change and ensure it is a top priority for every manager. The steps to implementing and leading this change include: establishing accountability across the organization, defining the desired results needed from the culture change, developing a cultural beliefs statement, communicating the case for change and consistently ensuring the leadership team is aligned with the change.

Respond to feedback the right way:

Leaders need to anticipate team scrutiny during the change process. While team members may be hopeful for new change, they may also look for signs of potential failure. Leaders should create a supportive workplace that promotes transparency and ask team members for feedback to let them know their voice is heard. Leadership needs to receive feedback positively and never respond with an excuse or dismissal. While feedback may not always be accurate or realistic, it is a leader's duty to ask for it and respond.

Maintain a facilitative communication style:

Effective communication is a key component for change. Leaders must create experiences and opportunities for the organization that promote ongoing collaboration and communication with team members. These experiences will empower the team and make people accountable for working toward change.

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