You might be a “Culture Caveman” if…
It’s not your leadership style, your EQ or your IQ. (But It could be a Low-C quotient that’s interfering with business performance.)
Should I be worried about a “Low-C” quotient?
We’re not comfortable admitting it, let alone talking about our “Low-C/Low-CQ” (i.e., culture quotient, cultural intelligence). Most CXOs understand the value of strong IQ (i.e., intelligence quotient), EQ (i.e., emotional intelligence), strong relational leadership capabilities or SOCQ (i.e., social quotient) and most do talk a lot about the culture/human side of their business. On one hand they are intuitive sociologists — otherwise they would never have made it to the CXO level of success. On the other hand, they still lack the foundational technical expertise about how organizational culture is formed, how it works, culture vs climate, etc. Culture competency is a gaping blind spot, yet it is highly unlikely for many to believe they have anything more to learn on the topic—they are totally unaware that they are like “culture cavemen”.
Most CXOs don’t really know what they don’t know about culture. We don’t seem to feel comfortable addressing it with them either. Instead, we all work around it, bypassing the topic as much as possible with lots of busy work, ill-equipped culture committees, monthly pulsechecks, random short term engagement schemes, cheesy posters, misguided ambassador programs, and foolish optimism. That’s what a company with Low-CQ technical standards looks like.
Yes I should definitely be worried about a “Low-C” quotient.
Low CQ means low culture competency and that can perpetuate many variations of a costly culture bypass that could be happening all across the company. This unfortunate oversight creates all kinds of misdiagnoses, unnecessary workarounds, delays, wasted investments and increased friction/drama.
CXOs intuitively know that there are good business reasons to consider working on culture with a bit more technical expertise. The correlation of constructive culture norms and positive business outcomes has been studied across the globe for decades.
Can I boost my CQ?
CXOs have not been supported well when it comes to the emerging best practices around culture. Most are not settling for the costly culture bypass or low CQ any longer. CXOs are strengthening their CQ to get beyond the generic…to get to the specific strategic levers that change how a company optimizes the power of all their available intelligence (i.e., IQ, EQ, PhysQ, SocQ and CQ) to boost organizational effectiveness (e.g., execution, learning, adaptation/AQ).
The good thing about fixing a Low-C quotient, is that there are no adverse side-effects to fixing it. There’s no downside. There’s no short cut for catching up or building mastery, but there is a short-hand language full of new intuitive + expert learning aids that make it easier and scalable. Plus there is a fast, flexible 90-day approach and reliable model that can help simplify the complexity and make your culture efforts more strategic and more actionable with greater precision.
A low CQ is relatively easy to boost. What’s not easy, is living with the regret that comes from years of ignoring this common technical gap or thinking you’ve got it covered when you don’t.
Don’t be a culture caveman.
Don’t ignore a Low-C quotient.
No more dabbling. No more hacking. Pursue culture mastery.
— writing contribution credits: Adam Stokes.