I once worked in a company that used “Your simply the best (Tina Turner)” as their corporate hymn. Apart from the fact that it was utterly untrue, there is a certain arrogance to it -“simply the best, better than all the rest…” . As anyone with a little knowledge of organizational culture would now, the idea of superiority is a dangerous path to walk down. When a company culture perceives itself as superior to every one else, there is no room for reflection or dissent.
At Wemind, we don’t have one corporate hymn – we have a whole playlist on Spotify. One frequently played track is “Wild Boys” with Duran Duran:
“Wild boys never lose it
Wild boys never chose this way
Wild boys never close your eyes
Wild boys always shine”
All though the song is more than 25 years old now, it still has a strong sense of youthfullness and optimism to it – about being comfortable on the edge and not being afraid of challenges. And yes, we do have some pretty wild girls as well.
Yesterday, I attended a price ceremony at Copenhagen Business School. Before the ceremony, a wonderful quire performed “Man in the Mirror” by Michael Jacksson in front of the attendies.
I am not sure whether it was a random choice, but I believe it is well suited for CBS current transformation process (and for many other organizations as well). It emphasizes the fact that organizational change starts and ends with individual commitment:
“I’m Starting With The Man In
I’m Asking Him To Change
And No Message Could Have
Been Any Clearer
If You Wanna Make The World
A Better Place
Take A Look At Yourself, And
Then Make A Change”
No message could have been any clearer… so what is your Corporate Hymn?