Book Review: Creating A Company Culture That Is Fundamentally Different
Book Title and Edition: Fundamentally Different: Building a Culture of Success through Organizational Values.
Author: David Friedman
Condensed Review/Thesis: In a commoditized world, culture is your biggest competitive advantage.
Author's Background: David Friedman leveraged his executive experience and insight into a career as a sought-after author, speaker, and trainer in the fields of corporate culture, leadership, and performance. And he's a valued C.E.O. Tribe Contributor (score!).
Intended Audience: Primarily business leaders, but anyone willing to learn will find a wealth of information and valuable lessons.
Larry's Two Cents: Every business owner I know talks about - and struggles with - their company culture. You want to know how to "do" culture? Then read this book...over and over, until you get it right. David Friedman not only wrote the book, he wrote the book on organizational culture. You want to know how to create real differentiation? Carve, and maintain, an edge in a crowded competitive field? Stand out in a commoditized world? Read it. Over and over, until you get it right.
Friedman knows of which he speaks: he was the president of RSI, an employee benefits brokerage firm. But under his leadership, RSI was much more than that. The company was named one of the Best Places to Work in the region seven times and one of the Fastest Growing companies four times. In 2006, RSI was the only company of any size, in any industry, to win New Jersey's highest award for quality, the Governor's Award for Performance Excellence, Gold Level.
RSI's unique culture enabled their tremendous success. Friedman became renowned for his "fundamentals," or the behaviors and attitudes he worked to instil in his people. At the request of clients and vendors, he began training others. Fundamentally Different is one product of this effort. Friedman presents his 30 fundamentals integral to his strong culture - and he doesn't stop there. He provides a clear guide for building and maintaining a culture of excellence in your company by creating YOUR fundamentals specifically for the culture YOU desire.
In a clear, accessible style, Friedman illustrates the power of culture and values and then shows you how to reap the benefits in your own organization. Sound good? Read it, over and over, and you will get it right.
When To Read This Book:If you are struggling with "culture" in your company (and EVERYONE does), read this and IMPLEMENT the principles. Doing so has made a major impact on many of my member's companies.