Shape Shifting

Many business and entrepreneur experts pound into our heads the idea that a new business or a start-up needs to establish its company culture from the outset, entrenching vision and mission statements and company culture into any new team member who joins. According to some, organisational culture is a set of shared mental assumptions that guide interpretation and action by defining appropriate behaviour for various situations. Easier said than done! Yes, it is imperative to establish our Vision and Mission Statements and refine our core values, but dictating a company culture is not going to happen overnight – it’s just not possible.

Over the last few months, as the BON Hotels team has grown in numbers and strength, it has become more apparent to me that company culture is not something you entrench. It is developed through an organic growth of like-minded people who create, wrestle and tweak this culture as the company grows. In essence, corporate culture shapes itself.

As a young company, I honestly cannot tell you what our corporate culture is just yet. Recent months have taught my team and I that not everyone fits into the developing mode of a fledgling, and that people will come and go. Sometimes they come with great promise, unbelievable track records and very impressive CVs, but they just can’t seem to crack the culture that is developing or they are too accustomed to certain ways of operating.

As we experience these casualties of resources falling away, we continue to remind ourselves of our core values. We want a team that is honest, a bunch of good human beings who are not afraid of hard work or stepping out of their comfort zones to get the job done. The hospitality arena and travel industry is an extremely pressurised one, and things are not going to ease up as we cope with new ideas, a new way of doing business and this mobile generation of “why wait?”. Out with the old and in with the new!

As we forge ahead with our new company I realise that these things are completely normal and are lessons to be learned as we mould our own culture. We are developing a new breed of industry thinkers, and that is what is exciting!

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