The Ring Culture Transformation Model

When you hear the word ‘ring’, what picture comes to mind?

A wedding band, a boxing arena, the sound of a bell, and J.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings—all are valid associations, but in our work with organizational leaders to cultivate robust cultures, we’ve forged an additional interpretation for the term ‘ring.’

Beyond its conventional meanings, ‘The Ring’ is a potent symbol we employ to catalyze transformative cultural shifts within organizations. It serves as a powerful tool to shape the collective identity and behaviours of a team, propelling leaders toward the achievement of desired outcomes.  This unique understanding of ‘The Ring’ underscores its significance as a strategic instrument for cultural evolution. By leveraging ‘The Ring,’ leaders can initiate profound changes, fostering a culture that aligns with their vision and goals, ultimately steering their teams towards success. The ring is comprised of four components which come full circle. They are:

1. CULTURE IDENTITY: Knowing what your organization believes in, stands for and live by will help you be more intentional about embedding it in the DNA of your organization. As a leader, ask yourself these questions:

  • Is my organization risk averse or does it lean more towards risk?
  • Is my organization team-focused?
  • Are we searching for individuals that can take our ideas and concept without objection and work with them, or are we looking for individuals who will innovate their own solutions?

It doesn’t matter what your answer is because each organization has its own values. What works for A might not work for B.

You must identify what is your organization stands for as the values are key drivers of intentions. They are the foundation on which cultures are built. They determine what the organization appreciates, tolerates, and condemns.  The Values Culture Period authors, believe that, when you identify what your values are as an organization, you can determine your next steps. You don’t get from point A to point B without knowing what kind of car you’re driving, and your values are the car.”

2. OPERATIONALIZED VALUES MODEL (OVM) :Once your organizational values have been clearly defined, the next critical step is to operationalize them, ensuring that each member of your team encounters and engages with these values from the moment they join and consistently throughout their tenure. Operationalizing Values Management (OVM) becomes a pivotal mechanism for ingraining your values into the very fabric of your organization. The OVM framework achieves this through strategic integration, continuous learning initiatives, and seamless incorporation into organizational processes.

The three key pillars of OVM—Embedding in Strategy, Embedding in Learning, and Embedding in Process—serve as the cornerstone for infusing your values into the DNA of your organization. This comprehensive approach not only communicates your values but also integrates them into every facet of your organizational structure, ensuring a consistent and pervasive alignment with your core principles.


Frequently, leadership training programs are exclusively accessible to top-tier personnel within an organization, overlooking the crucial need for broad inclusion across all staff members. The transformation of organizational culture should be a shared journey, extending seamlessly from the upper echelons of leadership to every individual within the workforce.

To foster a truly inclusive and impactful cultural shift, it is imperative that leadership development initiatives break free from their traditional confines and embrace a holistic approach. By extending these training opportunities to every member of the organization, a unified commitment to shared values and leadership principles can be instilled, ensuring that the cultural transformation is both comprehensive and sustained across all levels. As a good and effective leader, you should be developed in:

  • Advanced communication skills
  • Coaching and mentoring
  • Managing conflicts and promoting creativity

4. VALUE ENGAGEMENT: Assessing your employees’ values is a fundamental step in the process of organizational transformation. The engagement with and understanding of individual values form a crucial component in the broader context of cultural change. It is imperative to recognize that the alignment of your employees’ values with those of the organization is a pivotal factor in fostering a cohesive and unified workplace culture. Value engagement goes beyond a mere assessment; it signifies an active involvement in recognizing and acknowledging the diverse perspectives and principles held by your workforce. As these individual values converge with the overarching organizational values, a harmonious alignment is achieved, laying the foundation for a robust and shared cultural identity within the workplace.

In Values Culture Period, The Ring Culture Transformation Model is discussed in detail, and shows leaders key steps and strategies to success.  Get your copy today at buy-book.

Have ideas to share, want to make a comment or provide feedback – email Corey at [email protected].

In Leveraging Leadership, the second book in the Values.Culture.Period. Series, Atkinson explores the critical challenges leaders are facing due to our shift in workplace values.
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