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How to change culture

One school of thought says it takes five years to change an organisation's culture. Another view says you can do it over a weekend. Yet another view says that changing the leadership will change the culture.

All these ideas have their merits and their proponents. But the surest way I've seen to change the culture in order to improve performance is to train people. With new skills, people have more options to deal with situations in the workplace.

This means they can and do apply a broader range of behaviors. When people behave a certain way, cognitive dissonance steps in to say "if I'm behaving this way, it must be for good reason, otherwise I wouldn't do it."

As a result, people's attitudes change. And when enough attitudes change in alignment, you have a cultural change. And if you do this right (starting with the end in mind), you see performance benefits.

Try it. You'll see. This approach has worked for me. And for many organizations. And it will work for you too. Even if all you want to change is your own personal or household culture, the system works.


I spoke about this and other related topics in a video presentation which you can find here.

If you'd like some specific help with building a training program that shapes the culture you'd like to see, you can reach me via this link.

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