Organizational Artifacts

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Organizational Artifacts

The culture of an organization is really its personality or, as some would say, "how things are done around here". Culture is comprised of the assumptions, values, norms and tangible signs, better known as artifacts, of an organizations member and their behaviors. Members of an organization soon come to sense the particular culture of its own organization as it is one of those terms that difficult to express distinctly, but everyone knows it when they sense it. A cultural artifact is a man-made object which inherently gives information about the culture of its creator and users. The artifact(s) may change over time in what it represents, how it appears and how or why it is used as the culture changes over time. The United States Navy has a very well known, rich cultural history. Established 230 years ago, the Navy has many culture significances and artifacts which are still around today. It could be said that almost every piece of the Navy and its culture may very well be considered as an artifact. Yes, some of them are actual artifacts in archeological terms such as the sunken ships, immortalizing Pearl Harbor, in Hawaii. Some might disagree and suggest that they are tombs and have nothing to do with culture; I would disagree. Those ships still signify the bravery, loyalty and sacrifice of all the men and women lost, forever changing history and the culture of the Navy.

The Navy uniforms are another undeniable part of its rich culture. For many decades, the dress blue uniform has been one of the most recognizable and visible pieces of Navy culture in history. Sailors proudly wear their dress uniforms when disembarking for liberty in foreign and domestic ports. With their white "crackerjack" hat slightly tilted, off the ship they go to display their patronage and represent the United States of America. The tradition is as strong today as it was 150 years ago and everyone around the world knows a sailor when they see one....
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