Culture change that works

When we started Pecan, the general view was that it takes five years to change workplace culture.  In our experience it can be achieved much faster than that – with good insight so that  you focus on the right things.

Culture is often described as ‘the way we do things around here’. But that is just the outcome – of values, attitudes, assumptions and beliefs on the one hand, and structures, policies and processes, physical environment, communications and behaviours on the other.

By getting under the skin of your culture, we understand how it is impacting delivery of your strategy. What are the unwritten rules inhibiting or encouraging great performance? What are the blockers and enablers to achieving your goals?  What is required to unlock everyone’s potential?

It is always an evolution – keeping and reimagining the best of what you have, and redirecting, stopping and changing what is getting in the way.

Critical to evolving culture quickly is employee engagement – having everyone recognise current norms and the reasons behind them,  and  feeling involved in shaping the future organisation. .

Every workplace culture has prevailing  traits, similar to a personality. . These are seldom exclusively positive or negative – they are simply ‘what is so’ – your current default.

We use a combination of interviews, focus groups, observation and a short survey to get under the skin of the way you do things, the causes and the impact on strategy delivery.

We create insight into

  • Inherent strengths to preserve, build on and amplify
  • Issues and challenges that are getting in the way


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Using images,  helps create instant recognition and instinctive ownership

Organisations typically have two or three core values that lie at the heart of their DNA  and these remain constant through time and changing conditions.

To maximise success, organisations need to develop a small number of aspirational values from time to time. These need to be deliberately introduced and embedded into a culture.

We use a collaborative, engaging approach to

  • Define your core and aspirational values
  • Refresh core behaviours that are working and must be preserved
  • Codify aspirational behaviours that need to be introduced

We produce a simple, meaningful values and behaviours Playbook to give everyone clarity of what is desired and what will no longer be tolerated.


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Using colleagues’ everyday language  captures the spirit of your organisation and makes the values and behaviours feel relevant.

For values to become the DNA of your organisation’s culture and not just words on the website, every employee needs to engage with them, understand what they mean in their day-to-day working and work in a ‘system’ which makes it worthwhile.

We use our Five Cultural Enablers framework to ensure that everything from leadership role-modelling to people processes and communications are encouraging, supporting and celebrating the values being lived.

We help you accelerate culture change by creating a movement:

  • Coaching leaders and managers to identify the priority shifts to make and role modelling these
  • Engaging other key influencers in designing the embedding approach
  • Providing everyone with conversation frameworks to explore what your values mean in ways that are relevant to their day-to-day role
  • Identifying symbolic changes to make to build confidence that change is happening
  • Showing that it matters. Make a big song and dance about those who live your values and be demonstrably intolerant of those that don’t

Habits change fastest with repetition and creating a movement is the quickest way to change the agreement. Giving everyone the means to take ownership takes values off the wall and into everyone’s hearts and actions.

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Spotlighting examples of people ‘getting it right’ creates energy and helps others see ‘what good looks like’

All organisations have a small number of activities and core processes that are essential to their success.  Embedding the values, mindset and behaviours through these key ways of working has your culture be fundamental to who you are, how you operate, and the experience you create for customers.

We help you identify no more than three initial signature ways of working (WOWs) and redesign them with your values at their heart.  This makes sure you practice what you preach and can make you  distinctive from competitors.

Signature WOWs help you  attract people who share your values  to help your organisation thrive  and they will experience the same.


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Working ‘outside-in’   ensures WOWs are chosen that are  critical to achieving your goals and delivering a great customer experience