Organizational culture

values and behaviours that contribute to the unique social and psychological environment of an organization
(Redirected from Corporate culture)

Organizational culture is the behavior of humans within an organization and the meaning that people attach to those behaviors. Culture includes the organization's vision values, norms, systems, symbols, language, assumptions, beliefs, and habits. It is also the pattern of such collective behaviors and assumptions that are taught to new organizational members as a way of perceiving, and even thinking and feeling.

The seven dimensions of culture according to Fons Trompenaars.


  • A company's culture is often buried so deeply inside rituals, assumptions, attitudes, and values that it becomes transparent to an organization's members only when, for some reason, it changes.
    • Rob Goffee, cited in: Jürgen Rothlauf (2015), A Global View on Intercultural Management. p. 85
  • We keep a change in place by helping to create a new, supportive, and sufficiently strong organizational culture.
    • John Kotter The Heart of Change: Real-Life Stories of How People Change Their Organizations (2002) Step 8, p. 161.
  • [Corporate programming] is often done to the point where the individual is completely submerged in corporate "culture" with no outlet for unique talents and skills. Corporate practices can be directly hostile to individuals with exceptional skills and initiative in technical matters. I consider such management of technical people cruel and wasteful.
  • Action often creates the orderly relations that originally were mere presumptions summarized in a cause map. Thus language trappings of organizations such as strategic plans are important components in the process of creating order. They hold events together long enough and tightly enough in people's heads so that they act in the belief that their actions will be influential and make sense.
    • Karl E. Weick, Organizational culture as a source of high reliability. National Emergency Training Center, 1987. p. 98.
  • Although the '60s counterculture has been much maligned and discredited, it attempted to provide what we still desperately need: a spirited culture of refusal, a counter-life to the reigning corporate culture of death. We don't need to return to that counterculture, but we do need to take up its challenge again. If the work we do produces mostly bad, ugly, and destructive things, those things in turn will tend to re-create us in their image. We need to turn to good, useful, and beautiful work. We need to ask, as Thoreau and Ruskin did, What are the life-giving things? Such important questions are answered for us in the present by the corporate state, while we are left with the most trivial decisions: what programs to watch on TV and what model car to buy.
    • Curtis White, "The spirit of disobedience: an invitation to resistance," in: Harper's Magazine, April 1, 2006.

See also

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