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The culture of an organisation significantly impacts its growth. Therefore, HR professionals should review and evolve appropriate models that fit their organisational goals.
Christine Leatz and Mark Stolar delineate 4 models of corporate culture .
Companies that are into cosmetics, management consulting, venture capital, advertising and advertisement industry typify this culture. High risks, quick decisions and early feedback are some of the characteristic features of this culture. Employees should be ready to take quick decisions, handle high pressure and accept responsibility of the decisions.
A social approach is what a congenial work culture offers to organisations. Organisations involved in consumer products, retail outlets, real estate agencies etc adopt this kind of culture. Employees should value their customers since they are important for the business. Employees in such a culture should be friendly, responsive, work in teams and satisfy customers.
Risk aggressive culture
Similar to aggressive culture, risk aggressive culture also involves many risks. Employees’ decisions are often scrutinised by their superiors because of the potential risks involved. Organisations dealing in large capital goods, investment banks, aerospace industry etc embrace such a culture. These cultures involve high risks, slow feedbacks, slow decisions and no job security.
Government agencies are a classic example of the bureaucratic culture. They are rigid and resistant to change. Traditional banks and insurance companies follow suit. Absence of risk taking, rigid rules and critical feedbacks are some of the features of such cultures.
Knowledge of the various kinds of cultures helps both the organisation and the individual. With this knowledge organisations can look forward to recruit talent that best fits their cultures. They can also initiate a work culture that fits their core values and employee behavioural patterns.
Hope it will be of help.
thanks for giving insights into different cultures of organizations. However i'm looking for a different ans.. as a od consultant, if you were asked to bring a change in the culture of the organization..how would you go about doing it? i'm looking for a model that explains different steps to take in bringing about change.
Some problems of organisations have to do with the organisational culture: the way in which the organisation, including its stakeholders, use to act and think.
This organisational mental make-up is -more than structure or strategy- the decisive factor in obtaining success.
the goals of the organisation demand an external orientation of the members, but the organisational culture is characterised by internal orientation.
transparency is needed to be accountable and to function democratically, but the tradition to involve family members and to favour them, may makes transparency cloudy.
being value driven as a main characteristic of a NGO stands not well with the businesslike attitude of our professionals.
productivity, being directed towards goals, may be hindered by the grown habit to intervene in each other's work, directing most of the energy to each other instead of to the product.
* Changing the organisational culture.
# concentrate on positive aspects. It is easier to enlarge the positive aspects than to get rid of the negative ones.
# enlist the commitment of the top of the organization (being a model in their behaviour). There should be a clear mission with concrete goals. The top management should be involved. Change may be proposed from within, quite often as the result of interaction with the outside world, but top management should be involved too.
# organize bottom-up participation of people when defining the problem, in the analysis and solution-formation phase.
# define only the outlines, let people participate in formulating what these outlines signify for their work.
# external necessity . Look for an external necessity to change. New questions asked by target groups or donors can stimulate the organization to make the necessary change.
There are other general key factors for success to identify:
whichever variant is chosen for a successful strategy, it is important to make use of the existing energy.
a second element of a successful strategy is to keep in mind that support will be created by involving people and giving them the opportunity to analyse themselves, examining what the problem is and what would be the best solution.
a third element: always take into consideration the interests and needs of the persons which have to be motivated for the objectives of change.
Try to explore the meaning behind a view someone is taking. Try to translate someone's stand in terms of interests, needs, values, ideas, thoughts and emotions. Try to brainstorm about solutions that cover as many similar and different interests as possible.
It will be clear that change agents need a broad arsenal of strategies to achieve the change objectives, and that they have to be willing to continuously adjust their strategies to respond to ever-changing relations and circumstances.
In our installment on Organizational Culture we discussed cultural analysis as an approach to organization change. We will now look more closely at the process of culture change.
Culture change is difficult and time consuming because "culture" is rooted in the collective history of an organization, and because so much of it is below the surface of awareness. In general, the process of culture change must include the following steps:
# Uncover core values and beliefs.
These may include stated values and goals, but they are also embedded in organizational metaphors, myths, and stories, and in the behaviors of members.
# Acknowledge, respect, and discuss differences between core values and beliefs of different subcultures within the organization.
# Look for incongruencies between conscious and unconscious beliefs and values
Resolve by chosing those to which the organization wishes to commit. Establish new behavioral norms (and even new metaphor language) that clearly demonstrate desired values.
Repeat these steps over a long period of time. As new members enter the organization, assure that they are surrounded with clear messages about the culture they are entering. Reinforce desirable behavior.
It's clear that culture change is an ongoing process, so it’s very hard to identify organizations that have "completed" a successful culture change. We can, however, find examples of change-in-progress, in organizations that range from Harley-Davidson to the Pittsburgh Symphony. As we look at several examples, in this installment and the next, we will see some version of the process described above in each–even in organizations that did not originally set out to change their cultures!
Levi-Strauss is a company that did engage in a purposeful culture change process. In 1985, a group of minority and women managers requested a meeting with the CEO, complaining of discrimination. The CEO convened a three-day facilitated retreat at which white, male managers engaged in intense discussions with minority and female managers. These discussions revealed that there were, indeed, hidden attitudes in the organization that were in conflict with its espoused values.
Since that time, Levi-Strauss has worked hard to generate cultural change. The company developed an "Aspiration Statement" including desired beliefs, attitudes, and behavior. The statement specifies the company’s commitment to communication, ethical management practices, employee empowerment, and recognition for those who contribute to the mission of the company.
Employees at all levels also participate in training sessions on leadership, diversity, and ethics. Employee evaluations are based partially on how well they support the "Aspiration Statement."
To underscore the fact that changing an organization’s culture can take a long time, we would note that at Levi-Strauss, change has not been entirely positive in the lowest tiers of the hierarchy. Increased teamwork and peer evaluation have demanded major adjustments in people’s expectations and behavior, and that has led to increased conflict at times.
Through a series of training sessions and facilitated discussions, including listening, leadership, and negotiating skills, the symphony did begin to transform its culture. With help from the consultant team, they exposed conscious and unconscious assumptions about the negotiating process. They agreed to a new set of assumptions to be shared by all parties, and they created new behavioral norms based on those assumptions.
In the grant proposal, the purpose of the program was described as including goals of improving relations among all parties and creating a more effective, cooperative team. Program activities, including work in cross-constituency groups, helped to make the team metaphor more of a reality.
The important point here is that members of the San Francisco Symphony participated in a process designed to foster cultural change. In the conclusion of his article, Mnookin describes the new leadership of the San Francisco organization as being "at the helm," a metaphor that brings to mind a ship under full sail.
Metaphor can be a surprisingly powerful factor in culture change (or perpetuation). One prominent organizational theorist, Robert Marshak, writes that metaphors and myths are a primary mental framework for both individuals and organizations. He believes we need to analyze organizational symbolism, and reframe or replace metaphors that are no longer serving an organization well.
Hope it will help.
Articulate why change needs to happen and why it needs to happen within the planned timeframe.
Get on board the key decision-makers, resource holders and those impacted by the change.
Define in specific and measurable terms the desired organizational outcomes.
Assign responsibility to specific individuals for the various tasks and outcomes.
Build organizational systems and people competencies necessary for affecting the change.
Institutionalize the change to make it “the way we do things around here”.
We explain it in more detail at
Organizational Change Management http://www.businessperform.com/html/...anagement.html
and Change Management Approach http://www.businessperform.com/html/..._approach.html
You can also find there a checklist and a workbook that helps you work through the change.
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