In this essay I will argue that although managing the culture of an organisation can be highly beneficial to the success of the organisation, the attempt is still one that is very difficult and morally questionable to oversee. In the first section, I will outline the concept of corporate culture (Peters and Waterman 1982) (Parker 2000) as well as the reasons why managers view corporate culture as so beneficial to the success of the organisation (Ackroyd and Crowdy 1990). Secondly, I will argue the extreme difficulty of managing employee values and emotions, as it is so demanding to find willing and compliant labour that will work towards the goals of the organisation. I will be drawing on examples from Jaffee (2001), Mintzberg (1971) and Ackroyd and Crowdy (1990) to show just how profound employees values and emotions can be and for this reason are so difficult to manage. In the third section I will argue the efficacy and ethics of manipulating employees (Brewis 2006) (Willmott 1993) as well as the questionable decisions regarding diversity (Dipboye and Halverson 2004) (Strachan, French and Burgess 2010). Furthermore, I will conclude my essay by re-stating my argument, and summarise on key points.
Corporate culture: The real key to success?
Corporate Culture can be defined as the attempt to exploit the individual’s anxious striving for selfhood, through the expert psychological dissection and reconstitution of modern subjects, for the organisation’s purposes (management lecture 3). The way pay systems are set, the attitude of management to customers through a high level of service or even the way employees are asked to dress, are just a few examples of what an organisations culture could be like, specified so that employees are aligned towards the goals of the organisation. As Parker (2000) states ‘Every member of an organisations products and services and the unique patterns with which they carry out their responsibilities’ (Parker 2000 p.9) he recognises that this unique lifestyles of businesses is what makes organisations have a culture, and is what distinguishes them from the culture of another. Managing the culture of an organisation successfully, is about managing the employees prosperously (Peters and Waterman 1982). We see that the ‘excellent companies’ (Peters and Waterman 1982 p. 55) that have a ‘strong culture’ are those that recognise that the employees are the key to corporate success (Peters and Waterman 1982). These companies give employees control over their destiny’s, reinforce that people are made to feel like winners and celebrate small wins, providing a sense of self achievement to these employees (Peters and Waterman 1982). It is this type of culture that allows for employees to feel optimistic and to excel in their degree, performing with confidence, and these types of organisations that perform successfully in working towards their goals and objectives as a result of managing employee values and emotions effectively. Parker (2000) uses a quote from Business week to be on the same views as Peters and Waterman (1982) ‘as an employer, control the culture successfully and you will have higher productivity with more employee involvement’ (Business Week 1980 p.48 - Parker 2000 p.10), similarly recognising that employees are the key to success and that if employees values and emotions can be managed towards the goals of the organisation it will be beneficial towards the success of the organisation.
As explained by Ackroyd and Crowdy (1990), if managers can begin to more adequately understand workplace cultures, they are more likely to oversee and control a beneficial environment. We see that despite the fact that the slaughterman of the Casterton plant, were doing highly routinized and monotonous jobs that involved working in a blood stricken environment, dealing with bodily fluids and animal excreta, these employees still had great self esteem (Ackroyd and Crowdy 1990) due to the...
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