The Culture Code

Razroo Book Club - Intersection of Software + Business

Aleksandra Khmarskaia
January 21, 2021
3 min read

Why Read It

I will name you just a few reasons to read “The Culture Code” by Daniel Coyle. Would you read it or not—you decide, as always.

The first reason is the bestselling author with an impressive bibliography. Trust me, reading the professional author and the media editor is a clear enjoyment.

The second reason is extremely exciting subjects. To understand the nature of teamwork Coyle has been researching “eight of the world’s most successful groups” for four years. We immerse into the nuances of group work with living examples of a military unit, a movie studio, and… a gang of jewel thieves. That is intriguing!

And, last but not least, the book is not obvious. It is me who is obvious now, but Coyle truly made me consider teamwork from a different angle. “The Culture Code” is not something you read and explain yourself why you spent time on it. This book is something you read and sincerely find inspiring, discuss with friends, and make your personal little discoveries.


The simple and strong structure makes “The Culture Code” a pleasant read. Coyle names the three key skills to develop a great team, and there are three parts in the book respectively. The author explores what makes top-performing cultures tick, how trust and belonging are built inside a human’s brain, and sorts out who is a leader of a high-performing team in a fast-changing world.

Interesting Points

The most interesting point is the skill scheme Coyle is offering us. He highlights the three main skills to build a top-performing team.

Skill 1: Build Safety

Signals of connection generate bonds of belonging and identity. People while trying to be a good leader sometimes forget about the essentials. You cannot build an efficient team if you do not provide safety in it. Make a simple assuring that everybody is comfortable with the plans and actions you offer. That is how talented leaders create not just teams, but families.

Skill 2: Share Vulnerability

Habits of mutual risk drive trusting cooperation. With all these individualistic professionals obsessed with business ethics and a career ladder, it might be extremely hard to show vulnerability and share risks with your mates and colleagues. It goes against our every instinct but leads to trusting, fluid cooperation, which separates highly cohesive groups from all other ones.

Skill 3: Establish Purpose

Narratives create shared goals and values. The big idea of what your team does could make a miracle with its performance. Is everything you do only for financial benefit? People need to be driven by something important, like a higher mission. That is what can make any group perform as one. I find it not just an essential team driver but the main marketing trend of 2021 as well. We all need to sincerely share values both with global brands and with people around us.

Would I Read It Knowing What I Know Now?

Definitely yes. I found the book relevant to me when reading the funny example about a spaghetti tower. I will not describe the example here for you to go and read “The Culture Code” immediately. Daniel Coyle’s approach is so detailed that his teamwork methods would be useful both for new kids on the team and for experienced leaders and managers.

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