It is widely recognized that culture has far-reaching implications for organizations, from the board-room to the shop floor. The culture of an organization is instrumental in all aspects of a business, from the way work is performed, relationships with customers, developing and implementing procedures, and integration of a diverse workgroup from various cultures, to include those from around the globe. The United States is known as a nation of immigrants, and the culture of an organization can become more complex and difficult to manage into an integrated system to facilitate organization success.

In work cultures where employees and leaders are actively engaged, employees trust their leadership team and feel free to raise concerns when they arise. In these work environments, employees are less likely to become whistleblowers. When employees expose potential company wrong-doing, usually to an external agency, this act is known as whistleblowing. A whistleblower is an individual who has access to information and shares that information, usually with someone in authority, to legally explore or investigate the claim that is being made by the individual. Perhaps one of the most compelling reasons why some companies are focusing on the culture of their organization is due to the influx of activities surrounding potential negative exposures of presumed unethical behaviors by company leaders by employees. These negative exposures can create company loss in many ways, including loss of reputation and funds due to the fines that may be imposed.

A key way to keep the pulse on the culture of a group or organization is to assess the culture at some periodicity. There are many tools that can be helpful in assessing the culture of an organization. These tools include administering surveys, job observation, focus-group interviews, individual interviews, and review of key policies and procedures. The knowledge gained from assessing culture is a key component of the company’s sustainability strategy to ensure that an organization is able to perform at its highest level and reach Peak Performance.