The organizational culture of a business reflects the mentality, work ethic and values of the company's owners and employees. In some cases other firms have a family-friendly culture or a culture that encourages creativity. The term organizational structure refers to the actual framework of a company.
With its assumptions, values, and norms, the culture influences top management's frame of reference that shapes organizational structure. Differentiation of managerial activities determines who decides on what, and results in a certain level of centralization or decentralization of authority within the organization.
There are three levels of organization culture:
· Typical organizational Behaviors form the most observable level of culture, and consist of behavior patterns and outward manifestations of culture, such as perks provided to executives, dress codes, the level of technology utilized and where it is utilized and the physical layout of work spaces. Some notable characteristic behaviors may have considerable longevity – such as rites, ceremonies, organizational myths.
· Values underlie and, to a large extent, determine behavior, but they are not directly observable as behaviors are. There may be a difference between stated and operating values the values the organization espouses, and those that are actually in use. Organizational values are frequently expressed through norms characteristic attitudes and accepted behaviors that might be called the unwritten rules of the road and every employee quickly picks them up.
· To really understand culture, we have to get to the deepest level: the level of Fundamental Assumptions. An organization’s underlying assumptions grow out of values, until they become taken for granted and drop out of awareness.