Monday, January 19, 2009

Defining Culture

"Culture is comprised of the assumptions, values, norms, and tangible signs (artifacts) of organization members and their behavior"  (www.managementhelp.org/org_thry/culture/culture.htm).

Some believe that culture is the personality of the organization which can be felt as well as seen.  As I read through Marvin Ross Weisbord's, Organizational Diagnosis, I found that the six areas of inquiry helped me organize my thoughts as I develop my OD plan.

My first step is to collect some data on our PURPOSE ("What business are we in?").  At a first glance, this seems easy enough to answer, but after reading through the description, I realize that I must gather some data first to see if there are gaps between "what is" and "what ought to be."  I am going to start by asking a series of questions about our culture (assumptions, values, norms and tangible signs) to see if I can gain some insight into how these answers might/might not confirm our purpose.




1 comment:

cAnDiCe said...

P, Do you define your org purpose as the "written" purpose of your organization or the "lived" purpose that members demonstrate in their actions and language? These two type of organizational purposes may or may not be the same thing. As a researcher, part of the inquiry process is to let go of our assumptions of what we already believe IS or what OUGHT TO BE in the organization we "diagnose." ~C