The Importance of Company Culture

Is it time for a change in the company culture?

The environment of a company can be described as all of the elements that exist inside and outside the company that has a potential to affect the organization.

There are external and internal forces that influence the functioning of your company. Today, we’ll look at one of the internal factors that is often overlooked when thinking about an organization. In fact, in the 1980s researchers believed it was “the missing link.”

Culture

To put simply, organizational culture is just “the way things are around here.” The reason why it gets overlooked is because usually the culture is shaped inadvertently. The way that it is created is there is a pattern of shared basic assumptions that the group learned as it solved problems while trying to adapt to its environment as a whole. Eventually, it worked well enough to be considered valid and taught to new members entering your business. It could be taught through formal training programs, but usually it is shaped informally by telling stories, myths, rituals, and shared beliefs that show the employee “how things are done around here.”

Each organization’s culture is different, but it is assumed that the ultimate source of an organization’s culture comes from its founders, as they have a clear vision and they are unconstrained by previous visions. This is why founders act as role models and often inspire their employees and teach culture.

Starting from the manager and his leadership style, culture can be heavily influenced. Culture is unique to each business and what works for one business, might not work for another. Culture effects communication, decision making, risk taking and power. In turn, these processes will have an effect on job satisfaction, work attitudes, motivation, stress, efficiency, and innovation.

Sometimes culture can be what is holding your organization back from achieving greatness. Sometimes “the way things are done” at your organization can be heavily burdening the business process as a whole.

Take a look at your business and see if there is something that is bothering you about those parameters previously mentioned. Is there something that could be changed for the better? If that is the case, it might be done through changing the culture.

Changing the culture of your organization (for the better) is not something that can be achieved overnight. Also it is important to note that there is no best way to change culture, however there are a few elements that can be considered to give your change a boost.
Try the following:

  • Formulate a clear strategic vision
  • Display top-management commitment
  • Model the culture change at the highest level
  • Modify the organization to support organizational change
  • Select and teach newcomers and terminate deviants

Remember, this will take time because it depends on establishing trust. If your organization has a strong culture, then it will be much more difficult to change, conversely a weak culture will be easier to change. It is a matter of developing individuals’ belief in the organization and its goals.
Introducing cultural change is not just about telling people to do things differently – it is about encouraging and inspiring them to think differently.

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