HBR Blog: Creating a Culture of Unconditional Love

A recent blog post by Claudio Fernández-Aráoz has proven to be incredibly popular due to it’s emotive nature, Engage for Success would recommend the full article as reading however for those pressed for time, the following are the key highlights of a culture of unconditional love.

  • At the end of 2001, Argentina’s economy had completely collapsed. It’s decade of high financial performance was matched with a period were more cars were being stolen than sold
  • The following year at an annual partners conference, Claudio made a honest statement that he would wait for a year or so before deciding whether it was worth staying
  • It was at this point, that Claudio was led to tears as a partner from another country that hadn’t gone through the financial turmoil had stated ‘Our partnership has benefited from the extraordinary contribution of your office for well over a decade.  Now it’s the time for us to support you.  Your only job is to go back to the Buenos Aires office and tell every single member of the consulting and support staff that they all have our full and unconditional support’
  • That notion of unconditional love depicted at that time has been proven to be successful many years later
  • Any firm that wants to not only hire the best talent but also pull them together into strong and lasting teams can’t do so without fostering a compelling and inspiring culture.  That’s how you overcome challenges, and keep your mission going in your absence
  • All serious research, all respected business thinkers, and all great leaders confirm this point. As Peter Drucker put it, “culture eats strategy over breakfast”

The full article can be read here.

Claudio Fernández-Aráoz is a senior adviser at global executive search firm Egon Zehnder and a former member of its global executive committee. He is the author of Great People Decisions (Wiley, 2007) and the forthcoming It’s Not the How or the What but the Who:  Succeed by Surrounding Yourself with the Best (Harvard Business Review Press, 2014).

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