Culture. Evolution. Volvo.


Yesterday we had the privilege to visit the headquarters of Volvo.  It was an interactive and eye opening experience. From test-driving cars to witnessing the innovations behind the scenes, we were able to explore the inner workings of the company. Built around the idea of safety in the early 1920’s, the company has gone through various phases of cultural evolution throughout time.

Volvo before and now:



Servants in a big system

Engineering driven


Gothenburg centric


Speed to market/flexible

Personal Accountability

Customer driven

Self confident



The most crucial change they’ve done to their business model is this concept of being customer driven. They develop everything around their customers; from the seat belt to the safety airbag on the hood to protect of a pedestrian yet to purchase a Volvo car. The way they are continually able to implement these evolutionary milestones successfully within the company is with their theory of change; balancing performance and health.  Performance is what an enterprise delivers to stakeholders in financial and operational terms, whereas health is the ability of an organization to align, execute, and renew, itself to sustain exceptional performance over time. They hold these two values constant with they 9 Signs of Organizational Health structure

For this reason it is not a surprise they are the employer of choice. They are on the Global Top 50’s World’s Most Attractive Employers for 2013. They exemplify passion for customers and cars as well as real challenge and respect. The goal for them is to move fast and aim high, which allows for evolution to thrive.

Today, Volvo continues to grow globally and internally. By looking at the evolution of their culture we are able to see a bright future for the company on the horizon.