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Chapter 8 & 16

MGHB02H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 8 & 16: Organizational Culture, Organizational Learning, Conflict Resolution

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Brian Connelly
8 & 16

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MGHB02 – Week 11: Organizational Culture & Change:
Chapter 8: Social Influence, Socialization, and Organizational Culture (pp. 280-290):
Organizational Culture:
- Organizational culture – the shared beliefs, values, and assumptions that exist in an org
oDetermine the norms that develop and the patterns of behaviour that emerge from these norms
- Characteristics of culture:
oCulture represents a true “way of life” for org members who often take its influence for granted
oInvolves basic assumptions, values, and beliefs  fairly stable over time and can persist despite turnover
providing social continuity
oContent can involve matters that are internal or external to the org
Internal  might support innovation, risk taking, or secrecy of info
External  might support “putting the customer first” or behaving unethically toward
oCan have a strong impact on both org performance and member satisfaction
-Subcultures – smaller cultures that develop within a larger org culture that are based on differences in training,
occupation, or department goals
-Strong culture – an organizational culture with intense and persuasive beliefs, values, and assumptions
oStrongly supported by the majority of members, even cutting across any subcultures that might exist
oGreat consensus on “what the org is about” or what it stands for
oWeak cultures  fragmented and have less impact on org members
o1) an org need not be big to have a strong culture
o2) strong cultures do not necessarily result in blind conformity
o3) strong cultures are associated with greater success and effectiveness
- Assets of strong cultures:
oCoordination  right hand knows what the left hand is doing
Different parts of the org can learn from each other and can coordinate their efforts
Important in decentralized, team-oriented orgs
oConflict resolution  sharing core values can be a powerful mechanism that helps to resolve conflicts
oFinancial success  strong culture can contribute to financial success when the culture supports the
mission, strategy, and goals of the org as long as liabilities can be avoided
Corporate culture has a tangible impact on LT success and an org’s ability to recruit, manage,
and retain the best people
- Liabilities of strong cultures:
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oResistance to change  a strong culture that was appropriate for past success might not support the
new order
Mission, strategy, or specific goals of an org can change in response to external pressures
Can damage a firm’s ability to innovate
oCulture clash  when a merger or acquisition pushes two of them together under the same corporate
oPathology  culture may be based on beliefs, values, and assumptions that supporting infighting,
secrecy, and paranoia
- Contributors to the culture:
oThe founder’s role  emerge over time with the guidance of a key individual
Top mgmt. strongly shapes the org’s culture  emulates what top mgmt. pays attention to
Conflict can occur between founder and top mgmt.
oSocialization  primary means by which individuals can learn the culture’s beliefs, values, and
1. Selecting employees  obtain those who will be able to adapt to the existing culture and realistic
job previews are provided to allow candidates to deselect themselves
2. Debasement and hazing  provoke humility in new hires so that they are open to the norms of
the org
3. Training “in the Trenches”  employees begin to master one of the core areas of the org
4. Reward and promotion  carefully used to reinforce employees who perform well in areas that
support the values and goals of the org
5. Exposure to core culture  culture’s core beliefs, values, and assumptions are asserted to
provide guidance for member behaviour
Emphasizes on personal sacrifices required by socialization process have a true purpose
6. Organizational folklore  members are exposed to folklore about the org, stories that reinforce
the nature of the culture
7. Role models  identifying people as “fast-trackers” provides new members with role models
whose actions and views are consistent with the culture  tangible examples to imitate from
- Diagnosing a culture:
oSymbols  reinforce cultural values
oRituals  send a cultural message; may be viewed as an exercise in punishment and debasement
oStories  told repeatedly to successive generations of new employees communicate “how things work”
Chapter 16: Organizational Change, Development, and Innovation (pp. 566-578):
The Concept of Organizational Change:
- Why orgs must change
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