Bookstores are filled with books sharing the “secrets” of success in the business world, many praising strategy as the key factor. Steve Proctor argues otherwise. He claims a healthy culture molded by great leadership will overpower strategy every time and why he is next in a long line of Servant Leaders to be profiled on this blog.
I recently had the opportunity to talk to Steve, President and CEO of Presbyterian Senior Living (PSL) of Camp Hill, PA. He was elected to the position in 1995 after joining the organization in 1971.
Although the organization has had a strong culture of leadership for many years, it wasn’t until about seven years ago when the organization went through a merger that it had to define its culture on paper. PSL didn’t want to force new employees to simply soak up the culture through osmosis.
The same principle applies for new hires today. Each quarter the organization conducts a leader orientation over the course of a few days. The first few hours are dedicated to leadership culture. New leaders in the organization understand that they will be held to this standard by those around them. If their behavior does not measure up to the expectations articulated in the organization’s culture, it will stick out like a sore thumb.