Do you ever wonder how you, personally, contribute to your firm’s culture? Contrary to common understanding, organizational culture an organic, living concept mutating, in one way or another, every second of every day. Culture emerges through the collective efforts of individuals within the organization—how they come together to solve problems, the ways in which they accomplish goals and what choices they make as they vie for position in the marketplace. Yet while every individual within a group contributes to cultural experience, it is leaders—formal and informal—whose influence looms the largest.

The role of leaders in shaping cultural experience is broad and far-reaching. Decisions on virtually every aspect of a firm—from strategy to operations to compensation—all imprint culture. It is a leader’s own words and actions, though, which often have the greatest impact. The way in which a leader behaves, communicates, interacts with others, delivers feedback, evokes transparency and measures achievement can permeate the organization. In short, a leader’s style has an undeniable echo that resonates across the organization.