Determinants of culture
Determinants of culture in organizations include several areas: technology, organizational structure, ethical norms, beliefs and attitudes and behaviour of people. Within the system of symbols, corporate culture is a kind of language, identity of the company, dress code for employees, interior design, specific activities or its trademark.
Organizational structure as a determinant of culture
- human resources
- training, guidance, mentoring and support
- external and internal environment
- type of organizational structure
- role of leader and management style
- decision making procedures
- qualifications of leaders
- centralization vs decentralization
- flexibility and adaptation
- recruitment of people
- motivational system
- procedures, regulations
- supervision, working conditions
Ethical norms and beliefs determining organizational culture
- company's vision and mission statement
- legal environment
- value patterns
- flexibility of beliefs
- tolerance of differences
- tolerance of mistakes
- compliance with the organization's strategy
- thought patterns
- integration and sense of belonging
- ethical market competition
- dress code, language, symbols
Attitudes and behaviours
- subconscious and automatic reactions to problems
- techniques used for stimulating behaviour
- attitudes towards objectives of the company
- attitudes toward risk taking
- attitude towards change
- adopting approved cultural patterns
- relationship between employees
- aspirations of individual employees
- uncertainty avoidance
- attitudes toward competition
- awareness of importance and role in organization
Technological determinants of culture
- information systems
- open communication system, networking and social media
- IT technology
- technological environment
- core competencies
- IT skills, knowledge and experience
- knowledge management
- innovation and R&D
- new product and service development
- quick response to changing customer needs
- quality management
Examples of Determinants of culture
- Technology: The technology that is implemented in the organization can have an effect on the culture, as it can define the way people communicate, interact and share information. For example, if a company decides to use cloud-based technology for their communication and collaboration, this could have an effect on the culture by making it easier for people to work together from multiple locations and reduce the need for physical meetings.
- Organizational Structure: The way an organization is structured can have a big impact on the culture and how people work together. For example, if an organization has a hierarchical structure, this could lead to a culture of deference, with decisions being made from the top and implemented downwards.
- Ethical Norms: The ethical norms that are established within the organization can have an effect on the culture, as they define what is expected of employees and how they should act. For example, if an organization has an ethical norm of respecting each other’s opinions and treating everyone fairly, this could lead to a culture of collaboration and respect.
- Beliefs and Attitudes: The beliefs and attitudes that exist within the organization can have an effect on the culture, as they can define how people think and act. For example, if an organization has a belief that innovation is important, this could lead to a culture of creativity and risk taking.
- Behaviour of People: The behaviour of people within the organization can have a big impact on the culture, as it can determine how people interact and work together. For example, if an organization has an open and welcoming culture, this could lead to people feeling comfortable to share ideas and work together to solve problems.
Advantages of Determinants of culture
A good corporate culture provides a number of distinct advantages to organizations, including:
- Increased employee satisfaction, motivation, and engagement. A strong corporate culture can provide a sense of purpose and identity for employees, leading to improved job satisfaction and higher productivity.
- Improved customer service. Employees who are highly engaged with the company’s mission and values are more likely to provide excellent customer service.
- Increased trust between employees and management. When employees feel that their organization is committed to its core values, they are more likely to trust their leaders and be willing to go the extra mile.
- Increased collaboration and creativity. A strong corporate culture encourages open communication, creativity, and collaboration, leading to better problem-solving and more innovative products and services.
- Greater organizational stability. By defining and upholding corporate values, organizations can ensure that their operations remain consistent and predictable.
- Enhanced organizational reputation. Organizations with strong corporate cultures are more likely to be recognized for their achievements and respected by their peers.
Limitations of Determinants of culture
The limitations of determinants of culture in organizations include:
- Technology - technology can be a limitation to culture if employees don’t have access to the technology they need to do their job efficiently, or if the technology is outdated or difficult to use.
- Organizational Structure - if the organizational structure is overly complex, it can be a limitation to culture as it can complicate communication and collaboration between departments.
- Ethical Norms - if ethical norms are not clearly outlined, or if they are not consistently followed, it can be a limitation to culture.
- Beliefs and Attitudes - if beliefs and attitudes are not aligned with the organization’s mission and values, it can be a limitation to culture.
- Behaviour of People - if people are not open to change, or if they are not respectful of others, it can be a limitation to culture.
- National culture: The national culture of the organization, such as the country or region in which it is based, can shape the culture of the organization. For example, in countries where collectivism is valued, the organization's culture may emphasize team work and collaboration.
- Leadership style: The leadership style of the organization is also a determining factor of the culture in the organization. Leaders who value communication and collaboration may foster a culture that emphasizes teamwork, while leaders who value individual performance may foster a culture of competition.
- Power distance: The organization's power distance, or the extent to which members of the organization are comfortable with unequal power dynamics, can also shape the culture of the organization. Organizations with a low power distance may be more egalitarian, while those with a high power distance may be more hierarchical.
- Symbols: The symbols used within the organization, such as logos, slogans, or symbols of success, can also shape the culture of the organization. These symbols can serve to reinforce the values and beliefs of the organization and can serve as a reminder of what is important in the organization.
In summary, the determinants of culture in organizations include technology, organizational structure, ethical norms, beliefs and attitudes and behaviour of people, as well as national culture, leadership style, power distance and symbols. By taking these determinants into account, organizations can shape and create a culture that is beneficial to their success.
|Determinants of culture — recommended articles
|Cultures and organizations — Organizational culture — Leadership and organizational culture — Management by values — Management by culture — Elements of organizational culture — Types of organizational culture — Espoused values — Culture and QMS implementation
- Hofstede, G., Neuijen, B., Ohayv, D. D., & Sanders, G. (1990). Measuring organizational cultures: A qualitative and quantitative study across twenty cases. Administrative science quarterly, 286-316.
- Hofstede, G. (1993). Cultural constraints in management theories. The Academy of Management Executive, 7(1), 81-94.
- Schein, E. H. (1988). Organizational culture.
- Willcoxson, L., & Millett, B. (2000). The management of organisational culture. Australian Journal of Management and Organisational Behaviour, 3(2), 91-99.
Author: Krzysztof Wozniak