Posted by Andrew VanderPloeg
Did you know that the root of the word "culture" is "cultivate"? Perhaps that seems obvious to you, and admittedly, when I read that last week, it struck me as something that I probably could have figured out - and yet, I've never thought about it before.
But it hit me as very interesting because a lot of people are talking about culture these days. They are asking questions like: What makes a good culture? Do we have a healthy culture? How do I develop a strong culture?
Meanwhile, the answer is in the word.
If we were talking face-to-face right now, I'd ask you to throw out various words and phrases that define "cultivation" and I'd bet you'd say things like:
- fostering growth
- preparing for use
Intentional words. Words that indicate commitment, thoughtfulness, considerate interactions and development.
That's how you build a great culture. It doesn't just happen. You cultivate it. And even then, the word is still instructive because when you cultivate, really, all you're doing is preparing for a result. The final outcome isn't guaranteed. But without the cultivation, you'd be doomed right out of the gate. It's fundamental.
My solution to remember and apply this concept on a daily basis has been to coin the new term, "Culturevate".
It takes the idea of culture and makes it into a verb. Something that doesn't just happen - it requires 'doing'. That way, I'll have a good reminder to constantly contribute to the growth of each and every culture I engage on a daily basis.
Feel free to use it yourself, and together, let's get culturevating!