Unfortunately, I can’t remember where I heard this phrase so I can’t give proper credit.
But it’s a cool phrase, right?
It basically means taking the meaning out of your words.
When I first heard it, I immediately thought about mission, vision, and values.
These get watered down all the time.
Many cultural alignment tools (especially in larger companies) seem to be designed to not offend anyone. (Not offending anyone is an impossibility these days, but that is a subject for another day.)
Many are just bland and uninspiring.
That’s a shame, because mission, vision, and values should be some of the most inspired work in which a leader can be involved.
Humans are emotional creatures and want to feel part of something larger than themselves. It is a leader’s job to make that connection clear.
Are your cultural alignment tools clear and to the point?
Are they part of the daily, weekly, and monthly conversations and decision-making?
Can the team (and you) accurately describe the culture and cite examples?
If not, you may not be fully realizing the benefits of creating an inspiring vision and ethos to guide your team. Or, if I may be direct, you are blowing it.