Transmission of Organizational culture3. How is culture transmitted throughout the organization?
Organizational culture is also shaped by forces outside of the organization - by the consumers of the products or services being provided by the organization.
Consider the theme parks created by organizations such as The Walt Disney Company. When Disneyland opened, the employees of that development had received extensive orientation and training regarding how to create the type of atmosphere and experience Disney wanted to provide for visitors.
As time went by, however, the public's interests and expectations have changed. New rides and attractions have been developed and new ways of doing things have responded to those changes. The ways in which a Disney character interact with a visitor to a theme park today may be similar to those of years ago, but may be quite different. Characters who have evolved may have different expected behaviors, may move differently, may have different powers or props or appearances.
The organizational culture of Disneyland when it opened was based on the societal expectations of 1955. There have been massive changes in society since then; the organizational culture of the Disney Company has changed in response by adopting new practices, adapting old methods to incorporate new technology, and by creating new features that integrate new developments in society.
There are many ways in which culture is transmitted in an organization just as there are many ways that we learn about the culture of our family or our society as a whole. Let us look at a few.
New employee orientation. This is one of the firm’s first chances to inculcate cultural values. The trainers use various slogans and mottos that tell what the firm values. They teach employees how they are expected to interact with one another and with their superiors. All of these things tell employees what the culture is like.
Physical layout of the workspace. Firms implicitly tell employees what their culture is like through the physical nature of the workplace. Open workplaces where all employees have easy access to one another, for example, imply that the firm has an open culture. The types of decorations on walls or in employee workspaces also send messages about the culture.
Peer pressure. Finally, culture is transmitted by people. Through their actions, they demonstrate what is expected. Through their reactions to the actions of new employees, they also put pressure on the new people to conform to the organizational culture.
Culture is passed down from generation to generation, and the same is true in a business. The older generation passes it on to the younger one in terms of traditions as well as policies. The new employees learn from the older ones.
There are many important aspects of the company's culture that you, as a new employee, need to learn and adapt to as quickly as possible if you want to successfully assimilate into the company and enjoy where you work. (spot.bcc.edu)
In general, most new employees have ideas they want to incorporate. Some corporate cultures will allow this, and some will not. Yet for a company to be successful, it has to maintain its own culture and also adapt. A succcessful corportation has to be able to grow and use these new ideas to contemplate the existing culture.
On-going employee training also helps to transfer and disseminate organizational culture.
This can take the form of video training sessions, professional development meetings, or even picnics/barbecues held to offer opportunities for mixing and team building.
For many professions, especially those with low rates of turn-over, on-going training can be critical to implementing changes of culture in the organization.