HR   and   Strategic Conversation

Organisation culture

Culture is: The attitudes and behaviours that are characteristic of the organisation - they are based on core values.

“It’s the way we do things here”

Organisation Culture is usually (99.9% of the time?) accidentally formed over the life of the organisation.

Culture is easy to impact culture accidentally (a new CEO can do it) - but it is not easy to design and intentionally shape it.  There are also a variety of ideas about how it should be measured.

‘Intentional’ organisational culture is formed on appropriate and agreed core values - but only where those values drive the behaviours and decisions of the members.  This is especially true of behaviour associated with the management / leadership style.

Some advantages of having a GOOD set of cultures for the organisation:

  • The queue of talented people wanting to join the organisation
  • The retention of talented people
  • The growth of talent by members (learn)
  • Organisational effectiveness
  • Organisational efficiency
  • Profit and growth
  • Growth of queue of new clients
  • Recognition by peers & other

Examples of Organisation Culture

  • commitment
  • central management
  • inclusion
  • early involvement
  • quality
  • speed
  • innovation
  • helpfulness
  • listening
  • attention to detail
  • creativity
  • openness
  • risk taking
  • creativity
  • cooperation
  • synergy
  • autonomy
  • teamwork

Are all the next ones negative?

  • hierarchical control
  • central management
  • confrontation
  • compromise
  • complaining
  • waste
  • billable hours (?)

Organisational Climate is perceptual and can be ‘felt’.  By contrast, Culture cannot be seen or heard or felt in the same way - except as evidence of the culture. 

For example, if we are talking about having a culture of innovation, evidence might be seen as follows:

  • new ideas rewarded
  • much brainstorming
  • relevant Professional Development
  • general encouragement
  • idea development system
  • ‘listen’ to customers  ideas
  • changes are normal

Perhaps the easiest way to shape culture is via climate - lead culture change with climate change.  A climate ‘for’ certain attitudes / behaviours can lead to climate ‘of’ those attitudes / behaviours and subsequently allow a culture of those attitudes / behaviours to evolve.

We offer training, assessment and consultancy services to help you along.