Capturing your culture – distilling it to a few powerful sentences, a radiant set of core values — is a helluva task. Get it right, and you’ve created an identity. Get it wrong, and you sound like a cheesy advertisement.
Which is why you should check out this all-star collection of culture decks. It includes some great ones, including Google, IDEO, Zappos, and Netflix. (And yep, it includes Reed Hastings’ legendary culture deck, which you should also check out if you haven’t already.)
A couple of patterns jump out:
First, how important the voice is. The best of these speak from a distinct POV, with attitude. There’s a truth-telling vibe that goes beyond the usual corporate-speak. They lean into humor and wit.
Second, how often they go beyond just values (which, to be honest, tend to be pretty interchangeable) to spotlight specific behaviors that drive their culture. For instance, here’s a slide from IDEO’s deck:
And here’s one from Hubspot:
All of which adds up to reinforce the old truth. Culture isn’t something you are; it’s something you do.