THE CULTURAL WEB STORIES SYMBOLS RITUALS & THE POWER ROUTINES PARADIGM STRUCTURES CONTROL ORGANISATION SYSTEMS STRUCTURE
Stories What core beliefs do the stories reflect? How pervasive are these beliefs? Do Stories relate to: Strengths or weaknesses? Successes of failures? Conformity or mavericks? Who are the heroes and villains? What norms to mavericks deviate from?
stories The stories told by members of the organisation to one another, to outsiders, to new recruits and so on, embed the present in its organisational history and also flag up important events and personalities. They typically have to do with the successes, disasters, heroes, villains and mavericks. They are devices for telling people what is important in the organisation.
Symbols Are there particular symbols which denote the organisation? What status symbols are there? What language and jargon are used? What aspects of strategy are highlighted in publicity?
symbols Symbols might be logos, offices, cars, titles, privileges or a language or terminology that is commonly used. Although symbols are shown separately in the cultural web it should be noted that many elements of the web are symbolic, in that they convey messages and meaning beyond their functional purpose. Routines, control and reward systems and structures are hence symbolic.
Power Structures How is power distributed in the organisation? What are the core beliefs of the leaders? How strongly held are those beliefs? What are the main blockages to change?
Power structures The most powerful groups and individuals within the organisation are likely to be more closely associated with the core assumptions and beliefs of the organisation. Of course there are many sources of power within organisations which may or may not feature in the stated structure itself.
Organisational Structure How mechanistic/organic are the structures? How flat/hierarchical are the structures? How formal/informal are the structures? Do structures encourage collaboration of competition? What types of power structure do they support?
Organisational Structure To a large extent the organisational structure reflects or points to the power with an organisation and the relationships that might exist between individuals and groups. The actual structure itself will give some indication of cultural aspects such as the devolvement of power, authority and responsibility and the role of collaboration or competition within the organisation.
Control Systems What is most closely monitored/controlled? Is emphasis on reward or punishment? Are controls related to history or strategy? Are there few/many controls?
CONTROL SYSTEMS These are the things which get measured or monitored either systematically or more informally. These include performance indicators which ensure that what is important to the organisation gets the right level of focus. Reward systems are also part of the control systems as they offer incentives for individuals and groups who adopt preferred behaviours.
Routines & Rituals Which routines are emphasised? Which would look odd if changed? What behaviour do routines encourage? What are the key rituals? What core beliefs do they reflect? What do training programmes emphasise? How easy are routines/rituals to change?
RITUALS & ROUTINES Routines are the things that make up ‘the way we do things around here’ on a day-to-day basis. These are essentially unconscious or embedded behaviours and possibly entrenched thinking which the organisation may find difficult to change without considerable, concerted and consistent effort. Rituals are regular activities which convey what is important to the organisation. Rituals can be as informal as social time at the pub, to more formal planned activities such as events and conferences.
THE CulturalSource: Exploring Corporate Strategy – Scholes & Johnson 7th Edition