According to Kroeber and Kluckholn (1952) culture consists of patterns, explicit and implicit, of and for behaviour acquired and transmitted by symbols, constituting the distinctive achievement of human groups, including their embodiment in artifacts.
Sinha (2000) suggests that “Culture consists of totality of assumptions, beliefs, values, social systems and institutions, physical artifacts and behaviour of people, reflecting their desire to maintain continuity as well as to adapt to external demands.”
Organisational culture is a system of shared meaning held by members that distinguishes an organisation from other organisations.
Organisational culture is the set of values that helps the organisation's employees understanding which actions are considered acceptable and which are unacceptable
According to Schein, Organisational Culture is defined as A pattern of shared basic assumptions that the group learned as it solved its problems of external adaptation and internal integration, that has worked well enough to be considered valid and, therefore, to be taught to new members as a correct way to perceive, think and feel in relation to those problems Gareth Morgan has described organizational culture as: "The set of the set of beliefs, values, and norms, together with symbols like dramatized events and personalities, that represents the unique character of an organization, and provides the context for action in it and by it."
Types of Organizational Culture
Organisational culture can vary in a number of ways. It is these variances that differentiate one organisation from the others. Some of the bases of the differentiation are presented below :
1. Strong vs weak culture : Organisational culture can be labelled as strong or weak based on sharedness of the core values among organisational members and the degree of commitment the members have to these core values. The higher the sharedness and commitment, the stronger the culture increases the possibility of behaviour consistency amongst its members, while a weak culture opens avenues for each one of the members showing concerns unique to themselves.
2. Soft vs hard culture : Soft work culture can emerge in an organisation where the organisation pursues multiple and conflicting goals. In a soft culture the employees choose to pursue a few objectives which serve personal or sectional interests. A typical example of soft culture can be found in a number of public sector organisations in India where the management feels constrained to take action against employees to maintain high productivity. The culture is welfare oriented; people are held accountable for their mistakes but are not rewarded for good performance. Consequently, the employees consider work to be less important than personal and social obligations. Sinha (1990) has presented a case study of a public sector fertilizer company which was established in an industrially backward rural area to promote employment generation and industrial activity. Under pressure from local communities and the government, the company succumbed to overstaffing, converting mechanised operations into manual operations, payment of overtime, and poor discipline. This resulted in huge financial losses (up to 60 percent of the capital) to the company.
3. Formal vs informal culture : The work culture of an organisation, to a large extent, is influenced by the formal components of organisational culture. Roles, responsibilities, accountability, rules and regulations are components of formal culture. They set the expectations that the organisation has from every member and indicates the consequences if these expectations are not fulfilled. Mechanistic and organic cultures: The most important aspects of organisation in public sector companies include hierarchies, supervision, control, formalisation, flow of authority and communication from top to...
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