Cracking the Corporate Culture Code

Robertson Hyetts is a proud supporter of the Bendigo Regional HR Network. At the most recent event, Steve Simpson discussed the concept of unwritten ground rules and how they impact culture in the workplace.

A brief overview of his presentation is below.

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Unwritten ground rules or ‘UGRs’ are people’s perceptions of ‘this is the way we do things around here’. Examples of UGRs include:

  • At our meetings it isn’t worth complaining as we know nothing will get done.
  • The only time anyone had spoken to by the boss is when something is wrong.

The incredible thing about UGRs is that they drive people’s behaviour yet they are seldom talked about openly. It’s the UGRs in an organisation that constitute its culture.

Created by Steve Simpson, the UGRs concept has been used by organisations across the planet – including Kmart Australia and New Zealand, McLaren Automotive in the UK, and Boost Juice.

In this presentation, Steve shares world-first research into UGRs, shows how UGRs drive people’s behaviours, how they are created, and most importantly, what can be done to create a unique point of difference using UGRs.

Whether it’s creating a culture to deliver great service, helping leaders understand their role in shaping the culture, helping teams perform better, equipping people to revel in change initiatives, or getting people to take safety seriously, Steve reveals how his concept of UGRs – unwritten ground rules – can be used to effect lasting, positive change.

Presenter profile

Steve Simpson

Steve Simpson created the concept of the UGRs (unwritten ground rules).

He specialises in helping teams and organisations to understand and improve their culture using the UGRs concept.

In earlier years he worked with organisations in a training and consulting role . Steve soon realised that the success of his work with these enterprises depended on the company’s culture. Unless the culture was ‘right’, there would would be limited lasting success.

That’s what led Steve to create ‘Unwritten Ground Rules’ or ‘UGRs’. Two universities – the University of Western Australia and Curtin University of Technology – teamed up with him to undertake world-first research into UGRs. This was the beginning of something very exciting.

Since then, Steve and his team have worked with organisations around the globe. He knows that the UGRs concept literally has universal appeal and impact. More importantly, the concept has the potential to change – in a fundamental way – the culture of an organisation.