culture

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culture

The norms and shared attitudes that pervade an ORGANIZATION. It may be expressed in symbols, rituals and the language used by organization members. It thus constitutes the distinctive characteristics of an organization. In recent years managerial interest in organizational culture has grown enormously It is believed that the culture will influence how individuals behave at work and hence will affect both individual and organizational performances.

A number of types of culture have been identified in this respect:

  1. power culture, characterized by an emphasis on personal charisma, risk-taking and a low level of respect for procedures. This might be found in a small entrepreneurial organization, where power tends to be concentrated in the entrepreneur;
  2. rôle culture, characterized by well-defined procedures and job roles, and an emphasis on conformity. This might be found in an established BUREAUCRACY for example government administration;
  3. task culture, characterized by an emphasis on problem-solving by expert teams. Groups are formed to deal with particular problems. Once the task is completed the group may be disbanded. Here the culture is one which attaches importance to expertise, though in fact expertise may be less developed in organizations of this sort than in role culture organizations, where job roles are more specialized. Task culture places a much greater emphasis on flexibility and creativity than does role culture;
  4. person-oriented culture, characterized by an emphasis on meeting the needs of individuals in the organization. This is often found in small, ‘alternative’ organizations. It may also characterize small organizations composed mainly of PROFESSIONALS, such as small consultancy companies, where it is deemed important that individuals be given some freedom to shape their jobs so that they can pursue particular professional or other ‘acceptable’ outside interests (for example, being a local councillor).

A concern of many managers in recent years has been that the prevailing culture of their organization is inappropriate, or even obstructive, to a desired change in objectives. For instance, a role culture, where jobs are specialized and well-defined, could obstruct creativity and hence prevent an organization from becoming more entrepreneurial. As a result much attention recently has been devoted to changing cultures. It is doubtful, however, whether managers can actually achieve dramatic cultural change in the short term. Culture is influenced by a complex of factors, such as the character and background of the workforce, many of which are to some extent independent of managerial action. See MANAGEMENT STYLE. MECHANISTIC AND ORGANISMIC, EXCELLENCE CULTURE.

References in periodicals archive ?
In the 1880s, Mason urged members of the American Fish Culture Association to consider the efforts of some European fish culturists who used fresh water shrimp (and other small organisms) for cheap, self-reproducing fish food.
I can tell you from experience the worst job in the world is taking off those nets when it's snowing and cold,'' the fish culturist said.
The increase in fish consumption as a good source of protein and its cultural and religious acceptability are an indication that catfish culturists must live up to expectation of meeting the local demand.
One problem facing fish culturist is the need to obtain a balance between a rapid fish growth and optimum use of the supplied feed.
This book is a remarkable testimony to the popular culturist slogan, "popular culture IS culture." Through careful on-ground empirical observation, it relates how a variety of popular culture vehicles from the United Kingdom and Europe have generated tourism and tourist culture fandom.
McLuhan might have been the world's greatest popular culturist offering what some consider to be an articulated short cut to understanding the phenomenon of the world as viewed through pixels and electrons.
The silk is sold at such high rates throughout the country, but over here we are not getting adequate returns for our efforts," said Jeet Bandhan, a Seri culturist.
* Are you a property modernist, or are you a property culturist?
As described in Holliday, Hyde, & Kullman (2004), a small-culture approach moves away from the culturist focus on pseudo-homogenous national groups often described in stereotypical terms; moreover, it allows us to question the often tacit and unarticulated ideological issues at stake in people's meaning-makings processes.
Pop management theory in its 'high commitment workplace' guise still pursues this inclusive culturist ideal; the other side of harassment and sacking of union sympathisers is casual Fridays.
Are 19th century Presbyterians better described as 'culturist' rather than 'racists' perhaps?
A powerful "communitarian" or "culturist" movement began to gain force and stress the value of the community.