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I feel proud of the organisation and I want to be driving its success. If its values are aligned with mine, I feel very motivated, very enthusiastic.
I want to shout about it and tell everybody everywhere else about it, why it is so fantastic. In particular, Professor Mary Jo Hatch Gothenburg University School of Business Economics and Lawhas written prolifically about two strong organisational forces, organisational culture and stakeholder culture, describing their mutual influences on organisational identity.
In this way, employees feel attached and committed to carrying out organisational activities, such as change. The question still remains: Building on the theoretical foundations of HatchChristina Price PhD Candidate and Professor Alma Whiteley Curtin Graduate School of Business, Curtin University, Western Australia conducted a study which found there can be negative consequences when employees feel that their identities have been compromised by management imposing a particular culture on them.
In essence, the case study demonstrated the critical role inclusion plays in culture change programs. Specifically, the study found that active listening must be complemented by the implementation of symbolic actions by management which embrace the Values to ensure employees feel connected to the organisation.
Aim This study had two aims. The first was to fill a gap in the literature on the implications of management enforcing employees to adopt the espoused values management have created in isolation from employee contribution.
Drawing on the mutual influences of both corporate culture and stakeholder culture on organisational identity Hatch,the researchers used this case study to explore the consequences of an imposed Values-based culture program on employees, and assess the risk if employees felt management violated these espoused Values.
The Values imposed on this organisation were: This research was conducted as a case study at an employee Australian financial institution which had recently been acquired by a larger institution. The sequence of research events involved initial research questions, field data and discussions.
Primary data was collected in the form of semi-structured interviews with 12 employees. When you find that the things which are important to you are being reflected in this place, how do you feel and what do you do?
Findings There were three key themes which emerged from the data, and a number of sub-themes in each. Employees making sense of how senior managers demonstrate organisational Values The key theme the data revealed was around the implications of managers not demonstrating the espoused Values they were imposing on employees.
This led to feelings of disengagement and frustration.
Underneath this key finding, the data also exposed some other interesting perceptions from employees. Employees generally accepted the espoused Values, however they also sought to make sense of purpose of the culture change.
They felt the way management was mandating these Values was wrong. This was echoed in response to management incorporating the new Values into an appraisal mechanism, furthermore highlighting the imposed nature of the program.
The second element of this finding is the congruence of personal and professional Values, which deepened the feelings of attachment to the organisation.
This particular finding refers directly to the research question on the intersection between personal and organisational Values. The findings therefore elicited a theoretical interplay of various dynamics including organisational culture, employee identity and identification, employee agency and commitment, folkloric and contestable discourse.
Ultimately, the findings represented that when there is a lack of mutual construction around organisational Values and culture, the level of commitment and motivation by members can decline. Importantly, the model included external factors - something which Hatch did not include as a way of contextualising the critical incidents that employees need to make sense of.
In the case of this study, it was the business acquisition. The researchers suggested that such an open dialogue would lead to employees feeling valued and included within the organisation, and more committed to achieving success.
Whilst not applied within this case study, the researchers have positioned it as an alternative theory to better understand how organisational change can be effective. A situated contestable environment: Implications Practically, this study sheds more light on the power of inclusion.
To read the full article, see Whitley, A. Cooption or Commitment through Contestation? Journal of Change Management, 142, ; or visit:Here are some resources you will find useful if you are studying for the Principles of Taxation exam.
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