culture

(redirected from cultures)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Acronyms, Idioms, Encyclopedia.

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 ?
London, United Kingdom, November 07, 2013 --(PR.com)-- This December, Principia Associates will publish "LEVERAGE: The CEO's Guide to Corporate Culture" by business author John R.
Between these two cultures lie the welfare state and its operational bureaucracy.
Healthcare professionals who are working to provide and improve care and services for older adults living in nursing facilities are abuzz with talk of "culture change." While these stakeholders want change, no consensus has emerged on how to define and advance culture change in these facilities.
Then, in 2004, an amendment to those guidelines stressed the need for companies to "promote an organizational culture that encourages ethical conduct." The result, says Darcy, has been a much-needed shift from mere legal compliance to deeper cultural transformation.
A variety of digital realia available on Peer-to-Peer networks (P2P), such as Emule, KaZaa and Bittorrent, can enhance the learning process for students of foreign language and culture, and the quality of the instructor's teaching.
The music, as others are quick to note, contrasts with the driving beat of popular music often rooted in working-class and minority cultures. Pat Ruggiero: "Popular music has a very strong beat underneath, and a lot of sexual overtones.
Although it is an important part of Japanese culture, the kimono is now worn mostly for formal occasions, such as weddings, funerals and tea ceremonies.
In the Zhang and Dixon (2001) study, culturally responsive counselors displayed pictures and crafts from the native land, had a world atlas with a map of Asia visible, used salutations in the client's own language, and expressed interest in knowing more about the client's culture. The perception of participants was that these counselors were more open to different cultures, more capable of relating to people of different cultures, and more capable of being helpful in resolving problems than culturally neutral counselors.
Such a viewpoint would support the earlier discussion that psychological tests can be more easily generalized to other cultures than psychosocial tests that are based more on the dynamic process of change.
Dogs and their owners were sampled as pairs, by fungal culture and nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR).
* The on-call physician sees the patient, notes the temperature, sees the blood cultures and is not concerned.
culture is more aggressive, meaning it is not as "soft" as Latin American cultures are.