BA 420 week 7 Discussion: Analysis of Organizational Culture

Analysis of Organizational Culture


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Analysis of Organizational Culture

Strategic leaders are tasked with the responsibility of creation and maintenance of organizational characteristics that promote and reward shared effort. The most important characteristic is organizational culture because it helps the organization to cope with its dynamic environment. Leaders encounter complex challenges as they attempt to realize organizational success in a competitive environment. This success is only possible if the concept of organizational culture is well mastered and understood.

Organizational culture may be characterized as consisting of levels namely behavior, beliefs, values, customs, traditions, and rituals. The top most level is thatof behavior and tradition; it’s the most observable level of organizational culture, and is composed of outward appearances and behavior patterns of the culture (Denison, 2012). For example layout of the work environment, and dress codes. These indicators are visible though hard to decipher because they only explain the activities carried out by the organization but not why. For instance, employees wearing casual attire on Fridays only.

Shared values is another important level of organizational culture. Shared values influence behavior, but are not as directly observable as organization’s behavior is. Operating and stated values are slightly different, behavior of employees is attributed to stated values. Beliefs and rituals are the deepest levels of organizational culture, they are as a result of the shared values. Beliefs and rituals are normally dropped out of awareness because employees take them for granted. For example, employees are unaware of the beliefs and rituals that form the deepest level of organizational culture.

Customs are rules of conduct applied to specific situations by members of an organization. They are used to deal with problematic situations with varying degree of concreteness. For example, how employees should appropriately interact with their employers or what one should accomplish to be promoted. Customs are used by employees of the organization to influence their behavior.


Denison, D. H. (2012). Leading Culture Change in Global Organizations: Aligning Culture and Strategy. San Francisko: Jossey-Bass.