On Tools and Culture

Oftentimes we mistake issues that we have with the tools that we use with the actual culture in which we use them.

In fact, sometimes I’ve heard of some organizations hype up a particular piece of technology or tool as their culture. I have found that very odd.

For instance, using a great application like Hipchat or Basecamp is both a wise and strategic for most growing organizations and businesses.

But to say that those are cultural artifacts or to use them as signals to annotate how “cool” and “hip” and “relevant” an organization’s culture is… well, that just doesn’t make any sense.

The culture determines the technology decisions but the implementations themselves are not corporate culture. They are manifestations of it in a way.

What really sits below the surface is the real corporate culture, the intangible goodness that makes a company worth working for. I wonder how many companies forget this and overlook it.

I can’t help but think about it when I see yet another company tweet about how their organization is so cool just because they have beer on tap or a ping pong table. They’ve got it so twisted.