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Definition

culture hacking

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

Culture hacking is the gradual process of implementing numerous small, positive changes in an organization. Culture hacking can be used as an adaptive means to increase productivity, often along with employee satisfaction.

According to Gartner’s 2018 CIO survey, 46 percent of respondents said the worst impediment to digital transformation is culture. Culture hacking applies small iterative changes that can have larger than expected results in the overall culture and work environment, increasing employee engagement and promoting a healthy work-life balance. Ideas implemented might include flexible hours, nap or exercise rooms, group challenges, employee satisfaction surveys and revolving shared duties.

Instead of using the idea of best practices, which can often use ideas implemented elsewhere that may be misguided or not applicable, culture hacking attempts to take a more organic approach to adapt to the organization and it’s people. Culture hacks can be suggested by management, though suggestions often come from employees. Culture hacking generally seeks an emotional response, which is suggested as an effective way to change behavior.

This was last updated in February 2019

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