MICHAEL COWEN

Culture

Culture is the most powerful, yet underutilised and least understood, CEO tool.

And then you get Exponential Culture.

What is Exponential Culture

It’s the holy grail and envy of every new startup, from Google and Amazon to the new startup that’s about to eat your lunch!

It’s the fuel that rockets an exponential business to create an impact 10 times greater than its peers.

It’s the code behind speed and agility and your ability to build, respond and refine as new information changes everything!

And I get to build it. Everyday!

Teraflow.ai’s greatest differentiator is our ability to deliver and get our client’s AI models into production at scale.

With our incredible staff engaged in our unique way of working we call FlowJo, we can challenge the legacy approach to technology!

This is why we love working with the Rebel Technologists – they understand the need to scale AI Models and know what it takes to disrupt their own ways of thinking and working.

Culture is subtle, often hidden, but expressed in everything you do. So how do I build, manage and adapt our own exponential culture?

Here are my three core tools:

1

The Structure Code: Designing your environment for behavioural change

2

The Relationship Code: The way we treat each other

3

The Mental Code: The mental agreements we have to make better decisions

Each of these tools can be difficult to implement and hard to deliver consistently. But that’s the beauty of the cultural challenge – it allows us all to push ourselves and develop as human beings!

The Structure Code

Designing your environment for behavioural change

Agility, scale, and responsiveness to new information require a different operational structure from the traditional fixed hierarchical approach. 

This needs to be defined by your strategy. 

We use a swarm model, a network of cross-functional teams that comes together to solve specific user case problems.  

The Relationship Code

The way we treat each other

People who find meaning in micro-moments perform exponentially better than their peers who don’t. They care, which translates into the quality of work they do and the value of the service given to their clients.

We find meaning through each other and how we work together!

Your strategy and structure define the type of relationships you have. For us at Teraflow.ai, the idea of being the guide rather than the hero defines our relationships.

For most organisations, it’s the opposite, where the heroes dominate, defining the code.

At Teraflow.ai, we have flipped how we think about relationships and performance. This is built into our “staff first” culture.

The Mental Code

The mental agreements we have to make better decisions 

What we say and do needs to align with the promises and commitments we make. I like to call these mental agreements.

These are the daily smoke signals we send through our conversations, communications and everyday behaviour. They can hard to grasp but can be seen by everyone – there is simply no hiding them.

But aligning our thoughts and actions is difficult to achieve when we disagree on what the agreements are.

Most culture programmes fail. Executives develop a set of values and assume that is enough for everyone to align.

I am driven by how we find meaning and purpose in the small moments of what we do every day. Understanding this is transformative and leads to a better, healthier, and happier life – it’s why I regret not swapping out my B.Com (Econ & Bus Econ) for a psychology degree.

It’s also why I went into marketing before digital changed everything – the way we work, the way we structure business, and the way we optimise ourselves.

This has led to my deep fascination with the intersection of culture, technology, and systems. This fascination led me into the digital world, where I led the Deloitte Digital Advisory practice and built five start-ups – most of which has frustrated my wife! That is, until we started Teraflow.ai, where she has found me to be at my happiest!

Want To Chat?

Understanding and wisdom comes from applied experience, often gained as a result of failure. This is why I believe in sharing real experiences, hard lessons, and real results.

People who “do” create real value, and this is the value I share through:

Keynote: My keynotes focus on the code behind building an exponential culture. If you want more insight, please Click here.

Panel session: Would you like me to share my experience building our TeraCode? Click here.

Consulting: Do you need us to help you make your AI work? Click here.

Podcast: Click here if you want me as a guest on your podcast.

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