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Achieving Sustainability Through Culture Change Dr. Christopher Payne Research Scientist June 15, 2011.

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Presentation on theme: "Achieving Sustainability Through Culture Change Dr. Christopher Payne Research Scientist June 15, 2011."— Presentation transcript:

1 Achieving Sustainability Through Culture Change Dr. Christopher Payne Research Scientist June 15, 2011

2 What is Culture? Shared system of values Values encoded in technologies and practices Organizational culture shapes employee decision-making Organizations also embed values in policies and business systems

3 How Does Culture Change? With difficulty…. Strong leadership necessary to challenge existing culture Integration with existing values easier, but sometimes not possible Policies, processes, and technologies must change to support desired shift in values

4 Leadership Must Pursue Change It must be seen as allowable, even encouraged, to have the values and standards of practice challenged and altered. Three areas of focus: Rules Roles Tools

5 Rules Organizational policies must support desired culture change. These policies are operative at multiple levels: Executive Orders DOE Orders and Notices Leadership attention and data collection Individual employee training, standards of practice, etc.

6 Roles Every employee contributes to shared values Not every employee contributes to specific outcomes Explicit roles need to be defined at both the strategic and tactical levels to align DOE mission objectives with integration of sustainability Give appropriate focus to players who have greatest impact

7 Tools Organizational culture is embedded in the way we work: training (both explicit and received wisdom) review systems, business software, even content of forms

8 Culture Change Requires Coherence All of the previous issues: Leadership Rules Roles Tools must work in harmony to achieve lasting change

9 Existing Values DOEs existing organizational culture has at least three elements that can support the incorporation of sustainability: 1.Science and technology lie at the heart of our mission 2.We will treat our people as our greatest asset 3.We will succeed only through teamwork and continuous improvement

10 Existing Value: Science & Technology What is the shared value of science? The Scientific Method Observation Hypothesis Experimentation Analysis Refinement of Theory Circular pattern of continuous improvement

11 Existing Value: People Safety Culture Improvement Assess current state Envision future state Plan transition Implement changes Sustain & improve Circular pattern of continuous improvement

12 Existing Value: Teamwork Integration of individual action into shared outcome …continuous improvement. Circular pattern of continuous improvement

13 New Value: Sustainability Sustainability shares this concept of a circular pattern of continuous improvement ISO 14001: Plan – Do – Check - Act

14 How to Operationalize Set quantifiable targets with meaningful metrics Engage staff in how to meet or exceed targets Make public commitments to specific actions Provide feedback on progress at meaningful levels Consequences for performance Continuously review SOP with eye to removing barriers

15 Common Pitfalls 1.Siloed approach 2.No clear vision 3.Lack of information/feedback 4.Insufficient mechanisms for learning

16 Conclusion Culture is a powerful force. It helps define who we are. Changing culture can be difficult. Culture change is possible (and necessary) The impact of creating new cultural norms can have a profound and lasting impact

17 Hypothetical Exercise #1 Think about your work group – the people with whom you interact on a daily basis. What one thing could you convince your group to try that would enhance DOE Sustainability?

18 Hypothetical Exercise #2 Think about the group of people in this room. You share common rules, roles, and tools within DOE. What one thing could this group do to change a rule, a role, or a tool to bake in sustainability?

19 Hypothetical Exercise #3 Exchange business cards with a person near you. On the card, commit to one action you will take to enhance sustainability. Share the results of that action with your colleague in one month.

20 Questions & (perhaps) Answers Christopher Payne, Ph.D. Research Scientist / Leader, Washington DC Office Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory 901 D Street, SW #950 Washington, DC (202)


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