Work culture is a combination of qualities in an organization and its employees that arise from what is generally regarded as appropriate ways to think and act
Why is it important?
Culture is the vehicle through which individuals coordinate their activities to achieve common goals and expectations
Culture helps individuals understand how their roles fit within the larger picture
Culture defines the norms of acceptable conduct
Culture develops consistent interpretations of behaviors throughout the organization
The well-managed culture can improve performance significantly while the unmanaged culture will impede even the best-intentioned change effort
The "work culture" of an organization is a product of its history, traditions, values, and vision.
"a pattern of basic group assumptions that has worked well enough to be considered valid, and, therefore, is taught to new members as the correct way to perceive, think and feel."
Desirable work culture includes shared institutional values, priorities, rewards and other practices which foster inclusion, high performance, and commitment, while still allowing diversity in thought and action.
Work cultures, that mix of practices and ideologies arising from the interactions of people with their work environments, have been shaped in all by diversity—diversity of employment opportunities, population, and housing. The ways in which people find jobs, the rhythms of employment , the size of the workplace, the process of getting to and from work, how the workday is organized, power relationships and hierarchies, how workers learn and manage their tasks, how they socialize and organize family life, how informal worker behavior interacts with sanctioned authority and rules—all these things constitute work culture. There are many different work cultures, reflecting the differences between skilled and unskilled labor, professional, white-collar, and service work, and workers' identities by race, gender, age, and ethnicity. Work cultures have also changed as the nature of work has transformed over the past
The work culture can be improved in a number of ways by, for example:
Improving communications between management and staff in both directions.
Consulting employees and their representatives about their jobs and any changes to them.
Ensuring that jobs which pose a risk and which cannot be completely eliminated are rotated so that no individual spends long on that task.
Ensuring that all employees have sufficient variety of tasks to enable them to use different muscles and postures and to make their job more satisfying.
Providing adequate rest breaks to prevent the build up of fatigue and by ensuring that the breaks are taken.
Identifying and removing stress factors from the workplace.
Giving workers control over their pace of work and how they plan their day.
Removing piece rate and payment by results systems that make earnings dependent on excessive work rates.
Removing bonus, performance or monitoring schemes which make workers push themselves beyond their capacities. Having proper monitoring and reporting procedures for symptoms of RSI.
Diagnosising an Organization's Work Culture
Developing an accurate perspective on an organization's work culture can be accomplished by asking the right questions at the right time. The following is a list that can help to align the people with their work culture:
What is the organization's overriding strategic intent?
How is the organization structured?
What are the organizations values?
How is work organized
How are decisions made?
How are resources allocated?
Which behaviors are encouraged?
Which are prohibited?
What kind of people work for the organization? What are their values? How do they think?
How do they act?
How much power do they have?
How much risk are they allowed, and how much do they want to take?
How are they selected and developed?
How are they rewarded?
How is pay viewed is it seen as an investment or merely the cost of doing business?
USEFUL AND POPULAR BOOK
ORGANIZATION PERFORMANCE AND BUSINESS PROCESS
THOMAS ROLLINS & DARRYL ROBERTS
-common goals of the people
-common expectations of the people
-better understanding of each others role
-common acceptable conduct
-resulting in smooth coordination
-individual behaviors are consistent
-close communication among staff
-staff consult each other
-shared institutional values
-seeking high performance,
example of work culture
-if the starting time in the morning was 8.45 am
every member of the staff would be at their
desk at 8.45 am sharp.
HOW AN ORGANIZATION's CULTURE CAN BE KNOWN ?
Organization culture can be a set of key values , assumptions,
understandings and norms that is shared by members of an
Organization values are fundamental beliefs that an organization
considers to be important , that are relatively stable over time,
and they have an impact on employees behaviors and attitudes.
Organization Norms are shared standards that define what
behaviors are acceptable and desirable within organization.
Shared assumptions are about how things are done
in an organization.
Understandings are coping with internal / external problems
LEVELS OF ORGANIZATION CULTURE
LEVEL 1---VISIBLE, that can be seen at the surface level
-office layout [ open office]
-ceremonies[ monthly / annual awards/long service/birthdays etc.
LEVEL 2- INVISIBLE , that can be cannot be seen but only felt.
-stories about people performance
-symbols [ flag, trademark, logos, etc]
-corporate mission statements
-recruitment/selection [ methods used]
-fairness in treatment
-risk taking in business deals
-formality in approach
-autonomy for departments
-responsiveness to communication
-empowerment of staff.
example of organization culture
-monthly awards of ''staff of the company''
-compliance to diversity at recruitment/selection
-managing by objectives
ORGANIZATION CULTURE AFFECTS THE
WORK CULTURE AND VICE VERSA.
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