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Chapter 8

Chapter 8 BU288.docx

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Wilfrid Laurier University
Ping Zhang

BU288 Chapter 8 – Social Influence, Socialization, and Culture Week 11 Organizational Culture -Socialization both depends on and shapes the culture of the organization What is Organizational Culture? -Organizational culture – the shared beliefs, values, and assumptions that exist in an organization -Culture provides uniqueness and social identity to organizations -These shared beliefs, values, and assumptions determine the norms that develop and the patterns of behaviour that emerge from these norms -Reasons that culture is important: -Culture represents a true “way of life” – an organization’s culture becomes obvious only when it is contrasted with that of other organizations or when it undergoes changes -Once a culture is well established it can persist despite turnover among organizational members, providing social continuity -The content of a culture can involve matters that are internal to the organization or external -Culture can have a strong impact on both organizational performance and member satisfaction -Subcultures – smaller cultures that develop within a larger organizational culture that are based on differences in training, occupation, or departmental goals -An organization can have several cultures -Effective organizations will develop an overarching culture that manages such divisions The “Strong Culture” Concept -Strong culture – an organizational culture with intense and pervasive beliefs, values, and assumptions -They are strongly supported by the majority of members, even cutting across any subcultures that might exist -In weak cultures, beliefs, values, and assumptions are less strongly ingrained or less widely shared across the organization -An organization does not need to be big to have a strong culture -Strong cultures do not necessarily result in blind conformity -There is a strong belief that strong cultures are associated with greater success and effectiveness Assets of Strong Cultures -Advantages to having strong culture: Coordination -The right hand knows what the left hand it doing -The overarching values and assumptions of strong cultures can facilitate such communication -Different parts of the organization can learn from each other and can coordinate their efforts Conflict Resolution -Sharing core values can be a powerful mechanism that helps to ultimately resolve conflicts -The core value will often suggest an appropriate dispute resolution mechanism Financial Success -Strong cultures contribute to financial success and other indicators of organizational effectiveness when the culture supports the mission, strategy, and goals of the organization -There is a direct correlation between culture and an organization’s health and financial performance BU288 Chapter 8 – Social Influence, Socialization, and Culture Week 11 and that corporate culture has a tangible impact on their long-term success and an organization’s ability to recruit, manage, and retain the best people Liabilities of Strong Cultures -Disadvantages of strong culture Resistance to Change -Common values and appropriate behaviou
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