The remote region of Temburong, in Brunei, is a natural wonderland, inhabited by monkeys, flying foxes, waterfalls and lush vegetation. It is separated from Brunei’s main region by a slice of Malaysia, but an 18-mile bridge will soon change that and connect this wonderland to the mainland, reducing the journey time to the region to 20 minutes by car.
Blessed with oil and natural gas, Brunei was the world’s fifth richest country in 2016, with a GDP of $79,710 USD. However, declining oil prices have inspired leaders to diversify the economy. They hope the bridge will open the region up to further international tourism and investment. The goal? By 2020, the Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism hopes to more than double tourist arrivals in Brunei from 218,000 in 2015 to 450,000 by 2020, under its 2016-2020 Strategic Plan. The Temburong Bridge, which is set to open in 2019, is expected to play a big role in the fulfillment of this plan.
As I read about this expansion on CNN, I realized most organizations have an external strategic plan that seeks to expand their footprint, increase customer satisfaction, and realize profitable revenue growth. However, many organizations lack an internal strategic plan to ensure they have a culture that delights their employees, who, in turn, are the ultimate drivers of customer satisfaction and profitable revenue growth.
In many instances, organizations understand the importance of culture, but for whatever reason, they put it on the back burner and think it’s simply going to take care of itself. The truth? It’s not. As I say in my keynote address, if you aren’t deliberate about creating an extraordinary culture, you will end up with a culture by chance and it will not be pretty. It will be mediocre at best and we all know that mediocrity does not breed success.