As you work through the book, jot down your thoughts.

 
 
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Your Journey

Depending on how long you have been at your work, it can be difficult to remember how you got where you are now. Take time to reflect on how you ended up where you are now. In addition, ask yourself some big questions like: Why am I in this work? and Why does my work matter? As a reminder and idea prompt, return to the notes written here as you move throughout the book.

 

The 5Ps

Use the 5Ps as a way to frame up how you will design your organization. In each of the Ps, identify a category of work and then your objective. As an example, under People you may have a category for vacation and then objectives as to what you hope to represent with your vacation policies.

 

Pushing Towards the Edges

As you consider how your organization is designed, be intentional with how you process and think about the entire organization. Use the spectrum to evaluate where you land on certain key items. As a Culture-Bending organization, you want to score yourself above a 0 as much as possible. This chart is arbitrary, of course. So, it takes honest reflection. To help cut down on your own personal biases, try performing these exercises with a team of people you trust.

 

Thoughtful Compromise

Reflect on ways you know your organization does not totally live out your values. This could be in what you make and how you make it. Or, it could be in how you pay people (salary, benefits, etc.).  List the current compromises along with potential risks they present (e.g., in how you run the organization, the culture, marketing, etc.). Then, jot down what a perfect world would look like and what you can do, over time, to move to implement change. 

Refer to this list often. Ask yourself what, if anything, has changed, and whether you are able to implement any changes that move you closer to your future aspirations.

 

Core Purpose

Use the questions in this exercise to start thinking about your core purpose. You don’t need to have this totally dialed in at this point; just jot down thoughts to spur thinking later.

 

Purpose, Invitation, Participation, Collaboration

Use the questions in this exercise to start thinking about your core purpose. You don’t need to have this totally dialed in at this point; just jot down thoughts to spur thinking later.

 

Cultural Strand

Use the questions in this exercise to start thinking about your core purpose. You don’t need to have this totally dialed in at this point; just jot down thoughts to spur thinking later.

 

Personal Strand

There are three different personal perspectives your narrative can incorporate. Your narrative may contain all of them or just one.

 

Aspirational Strand

We want to push the audience to imagine the world the way we see it. To do this, we need to understand our aspirations in relation to the cultural and personal strands.

 

Looking Back

Look around. What do you see? Take time to study the culture around you and how the current assumptions influence your thinking and the perceptions of your work. Use this as a way to frame your narrative.

 

Looking Forward

As you examine the cultural context, think about what narrative you might want to be a part of. What are the opportunities and risks that you see when examining culture? Where do you see the conversation going? Where do you want it to go? What opportunities do you see based on where it is going? What risks?

 

Reason for Being

Finding your Reason for Being looks a lot like a philosophy exercise. Take some time to dig in and ask yourself why your organization exists. Use the Core Purpose exercise (page 198) as a starting point. For each answer, dig deeper by asking “why?”

 

Vision Statement Pre-Work

As you work on your Vision statement, let your imagination kick in. Use what you see in your mind’s eye to capture the essence of your Vision. Write it in big, bold language that draws people to your work and energizes those around your organization. Let the tension of the plausibility create excitement for your work and a hope that you can pull it off so that others are rooting for you. 

When you are finished, look back at what you wrote and draw a symbol over the words that represent the six lenses discussed in the Vision section. Make sure all lenses are represented.

 

8-Word Mission Statement

The job of the Mission Statement is to answer the what of your organization. As much as the Vision needs to avoid specifics and measurables, the Mission needs to capture those things.

 

Narrative Map Component: Three Core Questions

The job of the Mission Statement is to answer the what of your organization. As much as the Vision needs to avoid specifics and measurables, the Mission needs to capture those things.


 

Narrative Map Component: Narrative Cycle

Synthesize your answers from the Purpose, Invitation, Participation, Collaboration exercise.

 

Narrative Map Component: Three Strands

Synthesize your answer from the Cultural Strand, Personal Strand, and Aspirational Strand exercises.

 

Narrative Map Component: Narrative

Sketch your narrative. Take as much space as you need. Work to refine and condense over time.

 

Narrative Map Component: Messaging Map

With your narrative in place you can start to create stories that point to that narrative. This map can be for a singular story or for how your organization thinks about stories in general. 

Use this as a rough framework to ensure that your stories map back to the narrative and push the audience further into your offering.