Presentation on theme: "Understanding Organizational Culture Part I"— Presentation transcript:
1 Understanding Organizational Culture Part I Edgar H. Schein (2004)
2 Culture and Organization Learning Cook and Yanow, 1993 The Powell Flute Company
3 Misconceptions about Organizational Culture “Culture” = SophisticationAnthropological view: Culture = Rituals and CustomsOrg research viewA “right” kind of cultureSome cultures are better than others (surveys)Stronger culture = Better performance
4 Abstract Nature of Culture Organizational culture describes phenomena that are often hidden and below the surface of observable behaviorCulture is within us as individuals (learned behavior in family, peer groups, occupation), yet constantly evolving as we join and create new groups
5 Culture and Leadership “Culture and leadership are two sides of the same coin in that leaders first create cultures when they create groups and organizations.” What do you think he means?
6 Attributes of CultureBegins with leaders who impose their values and assumptions on a groupIf the group is successful, assumptions come to be taken for granted as the “right” way to do thingsResults in a culture that now defines what type of leadership is effective
7 Attributes of CultureIf group runs into adaptive difficulties (the environment changes internally or externally), some of these taken-for-granted assumptions may no longer be validLeadership now becomes the ability to step “outside” the culture and initiate change processes that are adaptive to the new reality
8 “The bottom line for leaders is that if they do not become conscious of the cultures in which they are embedded, those cultures will manage them.” Edgar H. Schein, 2004
9 Shared Attributes of Organizational Culture ClimateEmbedded skillsHabits of thinkingShared meanings“Root metaphors”Formal rituals and celebrationsObserved behavioral regularitiesGroup normsEspoused valuesFormal philosophy“Rules of the game”
10 Characteristics of Culture Structural StabilityStable, as well as “shared”Culture survives when members of the org do notDepthDeepest, often unconscious part of group life; less tangible and less visible
11 Characteristics of Culture BreadthPervasive; influences all aspects of the organizationPatterning or IntegrationForms a “gestalt” or whole to create orderliness in the organizationReduces ambiguityPermits sensemaking
12 Culture DefinedA pattern of shared basic assumptions that was learned by a group as it solved its problems of external adaptation and internal integration, that has worked well enough to be considered valid and, therefore, to be taught to new members as the correct way to perceive, think, and feel in relation to those problems.
13 Three Levels of Culture Artifacts Espoused Values Underlying Assumptions
14 Artifacts: visible organizational structures and processes, such as ... Dress codeNames and titles of people and how they are usedFormality or informality in speakingDegree of emphasis on automationPerks such as parking, other benefitsTraditions upheldWorking hours
15 Espoused Values: established group values and beliefs such as ... Slogans, mottosMission statements or code of ethicsStatements about commitment to excellence (or customer service, etc)Overt and professed beliefs about how employees and customers are treated
16 Basic Underlying Assumptions: beliefs and attitudes so taken for granted that they are not often articulatedMost difficult to change because rarely re-examinedSimilar to what Argyris calls “theories in use”Represent a shared “mental map”Represent the most powerful aspect of organizational culture
18 Each member of a new group will bring his or her own cultural learning from a prior group. As the new group develops its own shared history, it will develop modified or brand-new assumptions based on what is successful in its own experience. These new assumptions create the culture of the new group.
19 What do you see as the artifacts and espoused values at Enron from the movie? What “appear” to be basic underlying assumptions in operation? How would you go about finding out more about these underlying assumptions to ascertain if what you have surmised is correct?