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CHAPTER TEN ORGANIZATIONAL CULTURE AND ETHICAL VALUES CHAPTER OVERVIEW Chapter ten explores the cultural and ethical values of organizations. First the nature of corporate culture, its origins, and purpose, and how to identify and interpret culture through ceremonies, stories, and symbols is described. How culture reinforces strategy and structural design is explored. Then ethical values and how managers implement the structures and systems and shape culture that will influence employee behavior are discussed. Finally, there is an overview of the international environment’s effect on cultural and ethical issues. Organizational Culture What Is Culture? Culture is the set of values, beliefs, and understandings, and ways of thinking that are shared by members of an organization and is taught to new members as correct. Culture exists at two levels: the surface level of culture includes observable symbols, ceremonies, stories, slogans, behaviors, dress, and the physical settings; and the underlying level which is more of the "true culture" includes values, assumptions, beliefs, and thought processes. Emergence and Purpose of Culture Emergence of culture is generally from a founder or early leader who articulates and implements certain values as a vision or business philosophy. Culture serves two critical functions: internal integration to integrate members so they develop a collective identity, and external adaptation to help the organization meet goals and deals with outsiders by responding rapidly to customer needs, for example. Interpreting Culture Interpreting culture requires one to make inferences based on observable symbols. Rites and ceremonies are the elaborate, planned activities that make up a special event and are often conducted for the benefit of an audience. Rites of passage facilitate the transition of employees into new social roles. Rites of enhancement create stronger social identities and increase the status of employees. Rites of renewal reflect training and development activities that improve organization functioning. Rites of integration create common bonds and good feelings among employees and increase commitment to the organization. Stories, the next set of observable symbols, are narratives based on true events that are frequently shared among organizational employees and told to new employees. Heroes
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