The Management Playbook: What You Need to Know About Corporate Culture – an Analysis of The Why It is Company’s Way or The Highway!

This briefing on Corporate Culture was prepared by Alexi Ingraffia while a Marketing major in the College of Business at Southeastern Louisiana University.

Introduction

What determines the success of a company? Many would say good management, determination, strategic thinking or something else of that nature. They would be right but that’s just one part of what it takes for an organization to operate at its optimal efficiency. Think about the floor-level of any business and the people that work there.  Do they look as though they fit the holistic views and image of the company? They may or may not and that depends on the organizations corporate culture or the collection of beliefs, expectations, and values learned and shared by a corporation’s members and transmitted from one generation of employees to another(Wheelen).
Corporate or Organizational culture is the other part of what makes a company successful. I’ve researched this topic and come up with my top 10 essentials that anyone would need to know about corporate culture. I’ve also given my personal thoughts on the topic and how it relates to organizations today.





The Idea in a Nutshell

Every person has a different personality that defines and sets them apart from someone else. The same can be said for a company but instead of a personality it’s called a culture. Corporate culture by definition is the collection of beliefs, expectations, and values learned and shared by a corporation’s members and transmitted from one generation of employees to another.
Kurt Lewin, a social psychologist, was the first to really study work environments. He and two others coined the term organizational climate in the study “Patterns of Aggressive Behavior in Experimentally Created ‘Social Climates.’” Eventually, the words climate and culture were used interchangeably. Organizational culture is now the term used today because it encompasses the holism of the work environment. A change in mission, objectives, strategies, or policies is not likely to be successful if it isn’t in align with the accepted culture of a firm. For example, when General Motors collaborated with three other international companies in 1996 to form Delta Small Car Program, things went south. GM employees couldn’t cooperate with others who didn’t share their views regarding vehicle requirements and architecture or of work practices and processes. These cultural differences lead to the downfall of the program in 2000(Wheelen). Needless to say the more a company can stay in tune with its culture, the more successful it can become.
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