1st March, 2011.
To: The Manager, Brook University.
From: The Organizational Cultural Analyst, Brook University.
Subject: An Organizational Cultural Analysis.
An organizational culture of a particular society, institution or business usually determines the profitability and the efficiency of that institution in achieving success. This culture normally entails the attitudes and behavior that are characteristic of a particular social group or organization. In this regard, it is very fundamental and elemental for any institution or organization like Brook University to conduct a cultural organizational analysis. There are three various approach that researchers can employ in carrying out an organizational cultural analysis; an integration approach, a differentiation approach and a fragmentation approach. All these approaches or theories differ in basic codes, standards and believes which actually makes the preference of a theoretical viewpoint an essential and complicated predicament or dilemma. It is also important to note that one approach is used in every single study which makes it even more prudent to make the right decision regarding which approach to embrace. These theories are also very much significant since they cater for the well-fare and well-being of employees in an organization and also help in managing unusual conduct through “shared values” in comparison with fixed rules (Martin, 2002).
This paper critically explores the various methods that can be employed in studying and analyzing the organizational culture in this University. The paper explicitly elaborates the three research methods outlining the strengths and weaknesses of each research approach. Moreover, the paper makes a recommendation on the best method that this University should embrace giving reasons for its preference in comparison to other methods. The three approaches include: an integration approach; a differentiation approach and a fragmentation approach.
In conducting an organizational cultural analysis, there are three methods that researchers can actually embrace; an integration approach; a differentiation approach and a fragmentation approach. In my opinion and capacity as the Organizational Cultural Analyst in Brook University, I would prefer that we embrace a differentiation approach since it looks into those expressions and symptoms of a culture that have constant, reliable and regular analysis and interpretation. Additionally, I would prefer for the adoption of the integration approach since it acts like a haven of harmony and uniformity in an organization. This will promote equality, sameness and togetherness in Brook University. An integration approach also embraces consensus or agreement in judgment, opinions or suggestions reached by a group as a whole therefore, possibilities of experiencing conflicts, disagreements and misunderstandings in an organization are rare and infrequent. Also an integration approach should be embraced in Brook University because culture will manifest itself at observable, visible and apparent levels of artifacts for example; behavior, law, norms or values. Moreover, an integration viewpoint and perception eliminates all chances of ambiguity, vagueness and lack of clarity (Bhattacharyya, 2010).
On the other hand, an integration approach focuses only on managers and other top managerial staff members like accountants. This can be viewed more as a merit than a demerit although critiques of the integration approach perceive that other low-ranked employees should also be encompassed in the study.
I did not pick a research based on the differentiation viewpoint or approach because it centers on cultural manifestations that have unpredictable, incoherent, inconsistent and conflicting interpretations. For example, policies can be set by top managerial staff but understood and taken differently by the same staff involved in the formulation of these policies. Therefore, it this approach is adopted in the organizational cultural analysis of Brook University, inconsistency, discrepancy and variation may emerge which may consequently breed conflicts and divergence. Just like an integration approach, this method also allows room for consensus in an organization although experienced at very lower levels of study termed as “subcultures”. These subcultures may be present in synchrony and accord, independently or autonomously, or in disagreement with each other. In a subculture, there is lucidity, clarity and patency while uncertainty and ambiguity is pushed to the opening or border between different subcultures. Therefore, it is not the best research approach for Brook University (Robbins, 2003).
Also, a fragmentation approach does not conceive the association and intermarriage that exists among cultural manifestations which makes it unsuitable for Brook University. It perceives these relationships between “cultural manifestations as neither clearly consistent nor clearly inconsistent”. Instead, cultural manifestations are disputably associated to each other, acknowledging much ambiguity at the expense of clarity. In the fragmentation perspective, consensus is temporary, impermanent and definite to certain matters, issues and topics or subject of concern (Brenton, 2011). Therefore, it can be debated that the fragmentation approach is more ambiguous and unclear since it can lead to too much conflict and disagreements in an organization. For example, in cases where new policies are introduced in a business set up
In conclusion, I would like to recommend the head of Brook University to adopt the integration approach in conducting its organizational cultural analysis. I propose that we pick the researcher with this approach because it embraces consensus, clarity and also promotes equality as compared with other researchers who use the fragmentation and differentiation approaches. In addition, this method minimizes to a greater extent chances of ambiguity (Martin, 2002). This approach will greatly benefit Brook University in its cultural organizational analysis which consequently will empower the institution academically and in other co-curricular activities. Moreover, the approach will promote homogeneity and equality among all workers in this institution which may result in togetherness. Also, this approach may promote freedom of expression since it paves way for consensus and may lead to eradication of conflicts, variances, divergences, disagreements and misunderstanding. Through this, a well organized institution may be groomed and nurtured whereby the gap between the senior staff and the subordinate staff is bridged.
Martin, J. (2002). Organizational Culture: Mapping the Terrain. California: Sage Publications, Inc. Retrieved from < http://books.google.ca/books?id=GVS-zVUa6KAC&pg=PA18&lpg=PA18&dq=single-perspective%20theories%20of%20culture&source=bl&ots=jPKSgPfsdO&sig=klXwdgEIt5SrjTACG5iyohDhE3A&hl=en&ei=Vj5gTb_vOIW0lQef4_3bCw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2&ved=0CCQQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=single-perspective%20theories%20of%20culture&f=false>
Brenton, A. L. (2011). Organizational Culture in Action: A Cultural Analysis Workbook. California: Sage Publications, Inc. Retrieved from < http://books.google.co.ke/books?id=36V86vO0ey0C&printsec=frontcover&dq=theories+of+Organizational+cultural+analysis-integration+approach&hl=en&ei=ZiVlTdLcOoPNrQevkqCEBw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CC4Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false>
Robbins, S. P. (2003). Organizational Behavior: Global and Southern African Perspectives. Cape Town: Pearson Education, Inc. Retrieved from < http://books.google.co.ke/books?id=YqOEiC9J5n4C&printsec=copyright#v=onepage&q&f=false>
Bhattacharyya, D. K. (2010). Cross-Cultural Management: Text and Cases. New Delhi, ND: PHI Learning Private Limited. Retrieved from < http://books.google.co.ke/books?id=ETuzeheuLi8C&printsec=copyright#v=onepage&q&f=false>