Artifacts Of Corporate Culture Essay

2352 words - 9 pages

Harvey and Brown in An Experimental Approach to Organizational Development define corporate culture as a system of shared values or beliefs that interact with the people structure and systems of the organization, an interdependent set of beliefs, values, ways of behaving and tools for living, and is derived from the management and the organization itself via actions and words that define the way employees are treated. (Harvey and Brown, 2001)They further explain that the six factors of corporate culture are:"1. Member identity " the degree to which employees identify with the organization, the type of job, or a field of professional expertise2. Team emphasis" the degree to which work activities are organized around teams rather than individuals3. People focus " the degree to which management empowers employees in an organization4. Autonomy " the degree to which departments are encouraged to operate in a coordinated or independent manner5. Control " the degree to which rules, regulations, and direct supervision are used to control the behavior of employees6. Risk tolerance " the degree to which employees are encouraged to be assertive, aggressive, innovative, and risk seeking" (Harvey and Brown, 2001)Donald Buresh says, "A corporate artifact takes on a variety of forms, including the architecture of the building, interior design of the office, employee manuals, newsletters quality procedures, product information, and sometimes even of staff meetings themselves. The idea here is by understanding the artifacts that are prevalent at an organization, the researcher can come to grips with the nature of the culture. The intent is to comprehend the nature of a corporate culture by the things that it creates." (Buresh, 2004)Background of Chosen CorporationWal-Mart's web-page states its mission as "Guided by founder Sam Walton's passion for customer satisfaction and "Every Day Low Prices," Wal-Mart's four retail divisions -- Wal-Mart Supercenters, Discount Stores, Neighborhood Markets and SAM'S CLUB warehouses -- offer a wide variety of quality merchandise to consumers around the world." and "Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. empowers its associates to serve the needs of their communities through its Good.Works. initiative. Last year, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., contributed more than $150 million to support communities and local non-profit organizations. Customers raised an additional $75 million with the help of our stores and clubs."(Walmart.com, 2004)Wal-Mart's policy on unionization of employees is, "At Wal-Mart, we respect the individual rights of our associates and encourage them to express their ideas, comments and concerns. Because we believe in maintaining an environment of open communications, we do not believe there is a need for third-party representation." (Walmart.com, 2004)Artifacts of Wal-Mart Culture and Interpretations of These artifactsJeffrey A. Krames says, "(Sam) Walton's obbsession with low prices helped to fuel the company's incredible growth and...

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