In discussion with Joyce Avedisian — Catalyst for Culture Change and Superior Performance — Part 1
I’m in discussion with Joyce Avedisian, organization effectiveness and learning consultant with a Ph.D. in organization behavior. We’ve been talking about corporate culture, and how to install true values into an organization on a day-to-day level.
This interview is in 2 parts, this is part 1.
Joyce, can you share briefly with us how you got into this line of business in the first place?
I have always been passionate about serving leaders who have integrity and strong personal values and want to translate those values into day-to-day practices. Throughout my 30 year career, I have partnered with individuals and teams at every level of the organization to build a high performing, high support culture based on a clear vision and mission and timeless spiritual truths. As a strong advocate of Servant Leadership, I help business leaders build people-first cultures that foster “win-win” partnerships and encourage superior performance. This cultural foundation provides a fertile environment for resourcefulness, creativity and innovation which, in turn, increases ability to adapt and be resilient in a time of tumultuous change.
Can you share an example of a successful project you implemented?
Of course, I would love to share two examples. Several years ago, I consulted with a Scandinavian sales and marketing leadership team of a global pharmaceutical company which was mandated to implement new corporate values. The leadership team translated values like ambition, ownership, urgency and integrity into behaviors which reflected timeless truths. Those behaviors created a culture of win-win partnerships, collaboration, innovation and continuous improvement. They applied these values to the implementation of one business objective, the launch of a new drug. The result: the new drug penetrated the market twice as deep and twice as fast as targeted. And it became a new model for launching drugs.
Very interesting and it sounds like a very effective way of implementing culture and values. And what is the second example you’d like to share with us?
A regional bank sought to improve its customer service from ‘good to great’. I partnered with the senior team and a group of internal culture heroes to identify 30 service standards based on the bank’s values. In daily huddles, every employee met with their department colleagues for ten minutes at the beginning of their shift, to review one standard. They discussed how they could apply the standard in serving customers and each other, and shared success stories. Bank leaders and employees told us of the transformations they saw — alignment of senior managers and employees around the values, tearing down of silos between departments, and employees regaining a sense of meaning in serving customers. The result: customers reported they received extraordinary service.