Chapter 3 Organizational Culture and Environment-The Constraints

Chapter 3 Organizational Culture and Environment-The Constraints

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Chapter 3 Organizational Culture and Environment:  The Constraints ANNOTATED OUTLINE 1. INTRODUCTION Managers must realize that organizational culture and organizational environment have important implications for the way an organization is managed. Both organizational culture and external forces that can shape an organization are explored in order to gain a better understanding of the complexities presented by internal and external environments. 2. THE MANAGER: OMNIPOTENT OR SYMBOLIC? Two perspectives concerning the role that managers play in an organization’s success or failure have been proposed. A.The omnipotent view of management maintains that managers are directly responsible for the success or failure of an organization. 1. This view of managers as being omnipotent is consistent with the stereotypical picture of the “take-charge” executive who can overcome any obstacle in carrying out the organization’s objectives. 2. When organizations perform poorly, someone must be held accountable. According to the omnipotent view, that “someone” is management. B. The symbolic view of management upholds the view that much of an organization’s success or failure is due to external forces outside managers’ control. 1. The influence that managers do have is seen mainly as a symbolic outcome. 2. Organizational results are influenced by factors outside of the control of managers, including the economy, market changes, governmental policies, competitors’ actions, the state of the particular industry, the control of proprietary technology, and decisions made by previous managers in the organization. 3. The manager’s role is to create meaning out of randomness, confusion, and ambiguity. 4. According to the symbolic view, the actual part that management plays in the success or failure of an organization is minimal.
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C. Reality suggests a synthesis; managers are neither helpless nor all powerful. Instead, the more logical approach is to see the manager as operating within constraints imposed by the organization’s culture and environment (see Exhibit 3-1 ). 3. THE ORGANIZATION’S CULTURE Just as individuals have a personality, so, too, do organizations. We refer to an organization’s personality as its culture. A. Organizational culture is the shared values, principles, traditions, and ways of doing things that influence the way organizational members act. This definition implies: 1. Individuals perceive organizational culture based on what they see, hear, or experience within the organization. 2. Organizational culture is shared by individuals within the organization. 3. Organizational culture is a descriptive term. It describes , rather than evaluates. 4.
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This note was uploaded on 03/03/2010 for the course MGT 7625 taught by Professor Trappey during the Spring '10 term at National Taiwan University.

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Chapter 3 Organizational Culture and Environment-The Constraints

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