Nice post, culture is always a good topic. Organizational culture might be due for a new definition…I wonder if we are up to that? Something to think about, let me get to your questions.
Do leaders get culture? No. Some exceptions, sure…but in my experience they are few and far between. And this is, I believe, more evidence that we do not have the way of leadership that we need today. Organizational culture is more important today than it has ever been, it is perhaps the biggest lever towards competitive advantage and most “leaders” pretend that it does not exist.
How do you know when a leader gets culture? They make it their job. They know that guiding and caretaking the culture is some of the most important work for senior leaders and they act accordingly.
Is making an investment in culture a requirement of getting it? If so, what kind of investment is required? Yes. We invest our resources in our priorities. Whether it is financial capital, social capital, personal or political capital you can be intentional and deliberate about culture by investing in it. The kind of investment varies wildly…depends on the organization and the culture that you are wanting to create.
How does a leader who gets culture operate differently than one who doesn’t? The leader that gets it makes it their job. The leader that does not get it pretends that it does not exist or does not matter.