‘Culture cards’ promote innovation at Time Inc.

As publishers seek ways to stimulate change, the media giant takes the outward-facing idea of a business-style card and turns it into a source of inspiration for its employees.

Perhaps stuck in your wallet or buried in your desk behind the stapler are some business cards that you never quite remember to give away at important events.

Maybe you’re one of those well-organized people who hand them out by the dozen.

Either way, those business cards intended for people outside your organization have inspired Time Inc. to print up a similar item for internal use: a “culture card” to remind employees of the company mission, strategy, expected behaviors and other points.

Chief Executive Joe Ripp recently revealed the new communication vehicle at a powwow for publishers, saying the cards were distributed to staffers amid a larger push for cultural transformation, AdAge reported recently.

“We are now one Time Inc.,'” Ripp said. “We now all carry around culture cards.”

Amplifying four areas

To emphasize that, the cards read One Time Inc. at the top. The front side lists four areas that explain its raison d’être: mission, strategy, vision and heritage.

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