Organizational Culture: 'Getting a Fix' on an Elusive Concept.

  • Duncan W
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Abstract

Research indicates that many executives believe organizational culture is real and that strong cultures can positively or negatively affect profitability. If a culture is to be managed, as other aspects of the organization are, it is essential to refine the ability to describe it, measure it, and alter it in ways that will contribute to the accomplishment of organizational goals. A multimethod technique known as "triangulation" was applied to the study of one organization's culture. With the use of obtrusive observation, self-administered questionnaires, and personal interviews, it was possible to construct a holistic picture of the organizational culture that was useful to management. The triangulation technique confirmed the existence of a subculture in the part of the organization examined. From the data gathered, it was possible to make a series of recommendations to top-level decision makers that would preserve some of the virtuous values of the counterculture and redirect some troublesome ones.

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Authors

  • W. Jack Duncan

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