Article -Organisation Culture - Business Manager HR magazine - Sept. 013
Organization culture is one of those important areas of business that is neither fully understood nor utilized to get success. It is difficult to define it in absolute terms because there is no culture absolute. It is relative. It is not feely component. It is not intangible. It is not vibe. It is one of the most important drivers that if not evolved, set and nurtured over a period of time consciously, will not bring long term sustainable success. Culture of the organization is the shadow of the leader. It cannot be manufactured. It has to be genuinely nurtured by everyone from the leader top down.
Now it comes to understanding what drives the culture of an organization? Is it power or ego of the leader? Is it encouragement or empowerment at all levels? Leadership fuels culture and culture fuels actions that consistently reflect values and beliefs. Having values and beliefs on papers in board room is one thing but making them alive and modeled throughout is another thing. Bringing the values of the organization to the life of the employees is the role of HR people. To create value driven culture, you have to hire persons using values as filter. Authenticity and value have long life.
Vibrant work culture requires openness, cross department collaboration, encouragement, empowerment, team work, trust, transparency and high EI (emotional intelligence) of people. It requires environment to flourish. Environment is built up by managers through strategic clear communication to behave, act and decide in a way that make values and beliefs alive. High EI of managers helps building environment that energize people.
HR professionals have the opportunity to act as culture builder because HR practices have significant, positive and meaningful relationship with organization culture. Such practices become the means whereby work culture is created, developed and can become powerful lever for shaping the culture. They are key internal catalysts for supporting and enabling the organization values. HR has to move from subject expert giving operational excellence to culture builder of the organization.
While the values of the organization are set by top leaders, it is HR that needs to act as mirror of those values and facilitate leaders in taking decisions that support and nurture those values set by them. It can also be a challenge for HR to influence the thought process of business leaders in this respect.
This month's cover theme is about organization culture. Management thinkers, professionals and experts from different industries and business organizations have captured the subject, discussed different dimensions, raised possibilities and posed many questions too for all of us to ponder.
Business Manager-HR magazine