Organisational Cutlure


Organisational culture is the easiest thing to comprehend and at the same time the most difficult thing to define. It is described as the system of shared beliefs and values that develops within an organisation and guides the behaviour of its members. It should provide for a clear vision of what the organisation is attempting to accomplish with the force, persuasiveness and nature of such model beliefs and values varying considerably from one organisation to the next. Many major firms operating in today’s society base their business on a strong operating culture. Where as smaller business’ that have little or no culture, regularly fail customer service requirements. There are advantages and disadvantages surrounding such methods of business management, with smaller and larger organisations finding a best method to suit their needs.


An internal environment is one that the business can control such as personal, marketing and accounting systems. A successful organisation continually reviews and changes, where necessary, factors within this environment. Once the perfect changes have been made to carry out the business goals, all staff are trained and reviewed upon to assure a strong operating system. These changes can be made within the marketing process, strategic plans, tactical plans, prime and secondary functions, authority, responsibility and chain of command.


All of these factors help to influence a business’ organisational operational culture, but the main aspects are within the business’ relationship with customers and creditors and personnel policies such as productivity, training and benefits, resource and technological requirements are also of major concern to assure a well-working team in all areas of goods and services. By altering such factors, a business can control its efficiency and effectiveness.


With productivity being of such importance to a business, all employees must share strong values and beliefs. There is little room for slackers and people who rely on others to finish their work. Therefore, with a strong management and closely nit groups, success will sure to follow. Employees must be trained in all aspects of their job to ensure that the final product is of the best quality and that the customers are satisfied.


“Henry Fayol’s management theory of Planning, Organising, Leading and Controlling is an ideal example of how a strong organisational culture can create the most efficient business.” (Graves 1986; p129). Initially, planning involves defining the goals and establishing strategies. Organising stands as the next most important section as it defines what needs to be accomplished, how it will be done and who is to do it. It is the management in this aspect that determines how successful the business is. Leading is directing and motivating all of the involved parties and controlling is simply monitoring activities to ensure they are being accomplished as planned and correcting and problems. Again, a strong managerial influence in the controlling section ensures that the right person is conducting the right job.


In the initial planning of the business, factors such as the marketing process, strategic plans, tactical plans, prime and secondary functions, authority, responsibility and chain of command are all outlined and given direction. Naturally, through organising and leading, the controlling aspect will again overlook the final product to ensure that the best methods are being used and a strong advantage is held over the competition.


A strong culture can be seen as the way employees speak and communicate with one another, how they dress and how they operate in general activities throughout the day. By how workers behave, ensures that new trainees learn and share the same common beliefs and goals. Throughout the business hours, new members notice these traits between co-workers and also share in stories and rituals. (Schermerhorn/Campling/Poole/Wiesner (2004).p45).


The behaviour of employees is of the most importance. This is the behaviour between employees, but also between the employees and the customers and the employees and the management. “Everything that is called manners is, of course, strictly determined by cultural ritualisation and the way in which workers communicate verbally and physically. (Lorenz, K (1967).p66). Manners relate back to the workers values and again back to the workers “underlying beliefs and attitudes that help determine their individual ethical behaviour” (Schermerhorn/Campling/Poole/Wiesner (2004).p1 49).


Perhaps the core of a strong culture can be traced to the employees’ values. This states the underlying beliefs shared by