posted November 27, 2017

Dagger Glimpses: The Culture Committee

Maggie O'Connor

I’ve mentioned before that company culture is null and void if it is not adopted by the whole, especially by leadership. In that same blog post from early April of this year, I talked briefly about the Dagger Culture Committee, even though it had been established six months prior. Among their duties back then, the same rings true today in addition to a couple other things.

Since its inception over 14 months ago and its installation 12 months ago, the culture committee has grown into something its members appreciate and honor. When asked why they enjoy being on the committee, there was a unifying response around the notion of, “helping shape the overall culture of Dagger.” One person even said, “It’s exciting and empowering to feel like you are playing a role in shaping the culture of such a special place now and for years to come!”

Obviously the initial goal was to make sure leadership and I weren’t the only contributors to our workplace culture, but I’d be lying if I said I knew with 100% confidence that there would be such a positive outward acceptance for an extracurricular that, in essence, is extracurricular. So, I’m here to tell you that if you want to implement a successful culture committee (feel free to make the name fitting for your workplace), seriously take these five things into consideration.

Already have core values and a vision in place. This might be one of the most important pieces to a successful culture committee, or any business for that matter.

Loathe status quote. If you don’t like change, installing a culture committee probably isn’t the best idea. #justsayin.

Create an application process. We created an application that was fairly simple but forces applicants to think about how they embody our core values and what they think they will bring to the table. There are also basic parameters that have to be met, such as having worked at Dagger for at least six months and be willing to commit at least six months of service.

Empower and trust. Especially if they are involved in your company’s interview process (which I cannot recommend enough). They were hired and selected to be on the culture committee, after all. Plain and simple: their opinions on whether or not interviewees are solid culture contributors can save your company thousands of dollars.

Be ready to say “thank you” a lot. In all things we should give thanks, especially for those who are participating in an extracurricular activity at work that is not part of their job description. Let’s face it: people like to be thanked. At Dagger, we say thanks via food, gift cards, and things of the like but do take liberties, as there are many different ways to say thank you.

If you are thinking about implementing a culture committee at your workplace, if you’ve implemented one and it’s not taking off like you had imagined, or if you have any other tips to share, I’d love to hear from you. Please feel free to shoot me a note at moconnor@dagger.agency. As one my favorite American lyricists says, “We’re all in this together…”