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Organizational Culture. Organizational Culture Defined. The basic pattern of shared assumptions, values, and beliefs considered to be the correct way of thinking about and acting on problems and opportunities facing the organization. The Basic Functions of Organizational Culture.

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Organizational culture l.jpg

Organizational Culture


Organizational culture defined l.jpg

Organizational Culture Defined

The basic pattern of shared assumptions, values, and beliefs considered to be the correct way of thinking about and acting on problems and opportunities facing the organization.


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The Basic Functions of Organizational Culture

Organizational

Culture

Provides a

sense of

identity for

members

Clarifies and

reinforces

standards of

behaviour

Enhances

commitment

to the

organization’s

mission


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Voluntary Survival: Its Connection to Organizational Culture

More people voluntarily

completed six years of work

in organizations whose

cultures emphasized the value

of interpersonal relationships

than those emphasizing

the value of hard work

Organizational cultures

emphasizing the value of

interpersonal relationships

100

75

Voluntary Survival Rate

(percentage voluntarily remaining

employed in the organization)

Organizational cultures

emphasizing the value

of hard work

50

25

Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 Year 6

Time Since First Hired

Organizational cultures

emphasizing the value of

interpersonal relationships

Organizational cultures

emphasizing the value

of hard work


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An example

WELCOME TO NORDSTROM

We’re glad to have you with our Company.

Our number one goal is to provide

outstanding customer service.

Set both your personal and professional goals high.

We have great confidence in your ability to achieve them.

Nordstrom Rules

Rule #1: Use your good judgment in all situations.

There will be no additional rules.

Please feel free to ask your department manager, store manager, or divisional general manager any questions at any time.


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Physical Structures

Rituals/ Ceremonies

Stories

Language

Beliefs

Values

Assumptions

Elements of Organizational Culture

Artifacts of

Organizational

Culture

Organizational

Culture


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Meaning of Cultural Content

  • Cultural content refers to the relative ordering of beliefs, values, and assumptions.

  • Example: RIM values intensity whereas Q-Media values thrift.

  • An organization emphasizes only a handful of the hundreds of cultural values.

Kitchener-Waterloo Record


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Organizational Culture as Shared Meanings

Yes

Organizational

Culture

Shared

interpretation

of organizational

events?

Regular

interaction?

No


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Organizational Subcultures

  • Located throughout the organization

  • Can support or oppose (countercultures) firm’s dominant culture

  • Two functions of countercultures:

    • provide surveillance and evaluation

    • source of emerging values

Most Organizations Have a Dominant Culture and Numerous Sets of Subcultures.


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Values of the Dominant Organizational Culture and Subcultures

Subculture values:

Sales group

Honest representation

of products

Subculture values:

Subculture values:

Engineering Group

Accounting group

Thorough product

testing

Accurate reporting

of financial data

Values of the

Dominant

Organizational

Culture

Open to

new ideas

Customer

service

High

quality


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Avocational subcultures

  • The employee at the next work station may really be from Mars


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Artifacts: Organizational Stories

  • Social prescriptions of desired behaviour

  • Demonstrate that organizational objectives are attainable

  • Most effective stories:

    • Describe real people

    • Assumed to be true

    • Known throughout the organization

    • Are prescriptive


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Artifacts: Rituals and Ceremonies

  • Rituals

    • programmed routines

    • (e.g., conducting meetings)

  • Ceremonies

    • planned activities for an audience

    • (e.g., award ceremonies)


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Artifacts: Organizational Language

  • Words used to address people, describe clients, etc.

  • Leaders use phrases and metaphors as cultural symbols

    • eg. General Electric’s “grocery store”

  • Language also found in subcultures

    • eg. Whirlpool’s “PowerPoint culture”


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Artifacts: Physical Structures/Space

Oakely, Inc.’s protective and competitive corporate culture is apparent in its building design and workspace. The building looks like a vault to protect its cherished product designs (eyewear, footwear, apparel and watches).

Courtesy of Oakely, Inc.

Courtesy of Oakely, Inc.


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Benefits of Strong Corporate Cultures

SocialControl

Strong

Organizational

Culture

SocialGlue

AidsSense-Making


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Problems with Strong Cultures

  • Culture content might be incompatible with the organization’s environment.

  • Strong cultures focus attention on one mental model.

  • Strong cultures suppress dissenting values from subcultures.


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Mergers and Collaboration

  • Firms Well Matched on Traditional Business Can Stumble in Blending Their Corporate “Personalities.”


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Bicultural Audit

  • Part of “due diligence” in merger

  • Minimizes risk of cultural collision by diagnosing companies before merger

  • Three steps in bicultural audit:

    1.Collect artifacts

    2.Analyze data for cultural conflict/compatibility

    3.Recommend solutions


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Merging Organizational Cultures

Assimilation

Acquired company embraces acquiring firm’s culture

Deculturation

Acquiring firm imposes its culture on unwilling acquired firm

Integration

Both cultures combined into a new composite culture

Separation

Merging companies remain separate with their own culture


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What does this mean for you?


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Strengthening Organizational Culture

Foundersand leaders

Strengthening

Organizational

Culture

Selection

and

socialization

Culturally

consistent

rewards

Managing the

cultural

network

Stable

workforce


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How to Read an Organization’s Culture

  • Observe the Physical Surroundings.

  • Ask to Sit in on a Team Meeting.

  • Listen to the Language.

  • Note to Whom You’re Introduced and How They Act.

  • Ask Different People the Same Questions and Compare Their Answers.

  • Get the Views of Outsiders.


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Assessing theIndividual-to-organization Fit


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