Challenge of Organizational Culture

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The term culture has many different meanings depending on how it is used. For some it may be used as an appreciation of good works of literature, art, music or even food. Culture is an important human aspect for human survival, but it is a very delicate phenomenon. It is steadily changing and easily fading away because it only exists in the human mind. Our buildings, governments, written languages and other man-made things are products of culture .An organization on the other hand is a defined structure through which related items or ideas are connected, for example, an organized group of people coming together for a particular purpose, especially a business idea or association.Basically, the term organizational culture may be defined as the personality of an organization, the habits and practices that an organization identifies with in its operations. It is what sets one company apart from others (Cameron and Quinn, 2006). A good organizational culture is one that takes a key interest on the importance of a motivated human resource as the most important aspect of organizational success.

Organizational culture plays a very vital role in any profit making farm. A healthy culture is seen as a strong talent-attractor. Ones organizational culture is part of the a few things that potential employees look at when assessing an organization. Today’s society embraces competition and it is therefore very important to maintain a high class of organizational culture. Time has changed, gone is the culture of recruiting a person you want from a large eager pool. The aptitude market is tighter and employers have become more selective than ever. The potential individuals need a better pay and good returns or benefits. . They need to work in a healthy environment that they can enjoy and succeed in.

Favorable organization culture engages people. Members of an organization should engage in their work in order to achieve their goals. Engagement brings about greater productivity which in return brings profit. A healthy organization experiences high profit making and any loss of productivity should be discouraged. A survey carried out by Gallup showed that “at least 22 million workers in the US are very "actively disengaged" - this particular loss of productivity is closely estimated to be worth between $250 and $300 Billion annually”. Your culture can engage people (Brenton and Driskill, 2010).

Workers are more likely not to stay if they have other options at hand yet they don’t find comfort where they are. This may lead to closure of an organization. The organization should work in a way that is able to create a good environment that allows expansion of ideas, through this; members get to succeed in their plans. The organizational culture is a paramount component of an individual’s desire to stay and enjoy whatever thing he/she doing in that particular firm. A healthy culture acts as a talent-retainer (Brenton and Driskill, 2010).

A good organizational culture brings about energy and momentum. A firm should invest in a culture that is vibrant and enables its members to value and express themselves. This boosts workers morale since they get to enjoy what they are doing. They work with a clear conscience that brings about respect, honesty and the other vices that are key to towards the growing of an organization. This creates a very real energy which permeates the organization and creates a new momentum for success. Energy is transmissible and builds on itself hence reinforcing the culture and the beauty of the organization. A strong culture alters the view of "work." Most individuals have a negative thought of the word work. Work equals drudgery, 9-5, "the salt mine." An organization should create a culture that is attractive in order to change the   people's view of "going to work". One would rather prefer seeing his work enjoyable rather than being tedious (Schein, 1993). Enjoying what you do lead to better results. A strong Organizational culture creates greater synergy. A healthy culture brings members and other people together. When individuals have a chance to mingle and communicate amongst themselves, they get to know each other better, they may find connections and as such new ideas may arise therefore greater productivity; these in the cooperate world is referred to as  synergy

Coca cola is a beverage manufacturing industry that has for over 118 years  provided quality refreshment to its over 500 million customers, on its core  principles is its commitment to local markets while satisfactorily attending to the needs of  people from various cultures and backgrounds “like to drink, and where and how they want to drink it”. Coca Cola has a number of bottling partners, and as such the company has over the years cut across the market to the deepest parts of the local communities it serves, Coca Cola believes that it is its mandate to refresh everyone. Compared to the time when only nine drinks were served from its early beginnings, Coca-Cola has since grown to be the world’s most loved brand, today, approximately more than 1.7 billion servings sold every single day.

Coca Cola aims at making each of its brands a drinking experience; it is a world business that operates locally in every community. Coca Cola achieves reaching the local demands of its clients through its more than 300 bottlers worldwide who offer the most needed support in order to strengthen the Coca Cola system. The main stake holders of Coca Cola range from m the company employees, the government agencies that come up with policies that are relevant to the operation of the business, nongovernmental organizations t hat partner with Coca Cola for Corporate Social Responsibility as well as the channel of distributors who are the core of Coca Cola (Brenton and Driskill, 2010). The company primarily manufactures and sells ingredients used for making their various products as well as owns the brands and as such it is solely responsible for consumer brand marketing initiatives. The partners on the other hand manufacture, package, and merchandise as well distribute the final beverages to customers and vending partners who in turn sell the branded products to consumers (Cameron and Quinn, 2006).

Coca Cola looks at the world as an ever changing place, the management realizes that remaining accustomed to the old traditions may not be the best way to survive in business, therefore, in order for the company to continue to be relevant as a business for at least over the next 10 years, strategy must be applied. As a matter of fact, an understanding of the trends and forces that shape Coca Cola in the future so as to swiftly move on will go a long way in as far as preparation for what is to come is concerned. This therefore is cultured in what is called mission and vision statements. Coca Cola’s mission is 1. “To refresh the world -in mind, body and spirit, 2. To inspire moments of optimism - through our brands and actions and 3. To create value and make a difference everywhere we engage”. As such, Coca Cola aims at providing the best beverages that will set it apart from the competitors.

In order to achieve their mission, Coca Cola has a set of goals and targets to deliver; this is in its vision to maximize returns to shareholders with a keen interest on attaining its overall responsibility. Its vision has been well knit into six major P’s; Profit, People, Portfolio, Partners, Planet and Productivity. Coca Cola also has values that guide its operation coined as Leadership, Passion, Integrity, Accountability, Collaboration, Innovation and Quality. These are the values that every stakeholder of Coca Cola must strictly adhere.

Coca Cola has a very big code of ethics that its stakeholders must observe. Code of conduct is defined as the rules and regulations that govern the operation of a business, this are the specific things or policies that every employer, employee and partner must observe in the course of working with the company. Big as it is, Coca Cola’s code of ethics has been broken down into various sections and majorly Code of Business Conduct and Code of conduct for none employed and Partners. The Code of Business conduct guides its business conduct; it states that there must be honesty and integrity in all matters (Schein, 1993).

It is mandatory for all the associates and directors of Coca Cola to carefully read and understand as well as strictly follow its precepts in their course of duty whether in the workplace or in  larger community. This Code is normally administered by the company’s Ethics & Compliance Committee. Coca Cola has an open system of communication where associates, suppliers, customers, bottling partners and consumers can ask questions concerning its Code and other ethics as well as compliance issues, they can report potential violations and this is normally through “Ethics Line” which is a global Web and telephone information and reporting service that is open 24hours with translators.

Having understood the term corporate culture, its advantages and the basic understanding of my company’s history, mission, vision as well as its code of ethics, allow me to identify the major challenges that face organizational culture as a whole. According to Cameron and Quinn (2006), just like I n many other businesses, organizational culture can be divided into “hard” and “soft” cultures, the former refers to major issues such as infrastructure and finances whereas the latter involves human resource as well as relational culture among the people in an organization. A survey conducted in 2010 by Six Seconds which is an international not- for- profit organization indicated that “soft” issues contribute three times more to an organization’s challenges. It was noted that inspiring corporate culture is the most prevalent issue faced by many companies including Coca Cola. Many leaders who attended this conference were much more interested in leadership and how best to maintain their employees than any other thing. It goes without saying that the biggest challenge facing organizational culture is maintaining the culture itself as well as the human resource. People come from different back grounds with very diverse opinions and cultures, there are those who are performers yet lack in some way as well as the non performers yet in their absence, an organization may fail, with this in mind, it is very difficult to get rid of the bad people as it is to maintain good people. Many business leaders find it hard to find, hire and maintain talent that is very important to the growth of a business, it is even harder to develop these talents be it internally or externally which by and large involves attracting good people to your company, it is a mammoth task to maintain top quality experts.

Many businesses have difficulty coming up with a system of leadership that will retain quality personnel as well as offering the employees the best offers without going at a loss, it is even much more difficult dealing with the younger generation who poses the necessary expertise but are constantly looking for more challenging environment (Brenton and Driskill, 2010). It is argued that many businesses want to maximize their staff with minimal pay and this poses a great threat to the development of business. perhaps the other challenge related to human resource is the fact that with the diversity in culture as well as the difference in beliefs and cultural practices, it is very difficult for businesses to instill positive culture that will be observed by all alike and this therefore means that leaders have a task of ensuring that there is a uniform positive culture necessary for business to flourish. It is hard to communicate within an organization and this has posed another challenge to business, many managers lack leadership qualities as they are like bosses who should be revered by the juniors, most often than not they tend to assume petty things that make one business stand out from the rest and as such, communication breaks down thereby necessitating a difficult working environment. Businesses are on the brink of the ever challenging competition and this means that as leaders, a lot has to be done to ensure that their businesses succeed.

There is also the issue of finances that play a major role in the success of a business. Business leaders should be keen in ensuring that there is a maintained culture that will forever raise the stakes of a company and provide them with competitive advantage, leaders should foster a sense of community among the employees to ensure that the organizational culture remains relevant to the company’s overall growth. The coca cola company’s products and subsidiaries have faced criticism both by watchdogs and consumer groups particularly in the early 2000s. The company has faced allegations and criticism based on possible risks of coca cola products that include obesity and environmental impacts of their packaging. How then do organizations manage this?

According to Alvesson (2002), strategies for managing organizational culture are very important in overcoming it as a challenge. The coca cola company has a management strategy the has seen it grow in leaps and bounds over the years, having realized the importance of human resource as well as the overall contribution that a positive culture has on the success of a business, Coca Cola’s management has come up with various ways of ensuring that  this asset is not lost at whatever cost, Coca Cola has the company director as the groups topmost member in its hierarchy, under him there are departmental managers who have been given the full authority to run their departments in the way that they please as long as they meet their key business indicators, in this regard, the managing director only approves major issues that will require his contribution, Coca Cola operates on a democratic type of leadership where  the employees have the freedom to work under no pressure, it should also be noted that Coca Cola has a hands free approach to leadership and this means that its leadership embraces 5their relaxed mode of operation as long as targets are met, Coca Cola also engages its staff in leadership forums otherwise known as capacity building workshops where the leaders encourage the workers and the employers to engage in a come together sort of meetings where people will discuss their different challenges and embrace each other as members of a family  so as to instill the sense of community, this in turn will greatly contribute to the overall good performance of the company since everyone will be motivated to do their best in the business in order to understand out. The departmental managers are encouraged to run their departments in a co-coordinated approach so as to reach the employees at an individual level (Brenton and Driskill, 2010). Coca Cola also encourages promotions based on the performance of its employees, whenever there is a vacancy, the first people to be considered are the current staff and in the event that they lack someone suitable, it is when they will interview other people from outside. This has encouraged the employees to work hard as their effort will be rewarded at the end of it all.

In conclusion, a good organizational culture is vital in ensuring business success, an effective organizational culture should possess customs and rituals that are unique to an organization which serves as the backbone of a business, there must also be documented history in order for the new employees to learn from, there must be a system of values whether stead or unstated that will serve as a guide in the event of failure to observe the rules of an organization (Schein, 1993). It is important that in order for a culture to succeed, there must be a conducive environment that will facilitate this development; an organization should provide an environment where strangers will feel welcome and at home as this would encourage cooperation. Attention should be given to the human resource as this is the backbone of a business, leaders should be able to acknowledge the impact that their leadership style may have on the overall performance of a business and its culture as whole. According to Schein an analysis of culture is important in dealing with irrational, frustrating and intractable aspects in a business. He further states that if leaders are not aware of the cultures of businesses that they are working in they are likely to lose to the cultures. It is imperative to note that since culture is part of an organizations history and as such a deeply rooted aspect of organizational behavior, changing it will always require a great deal of investment of both time and resources (Alvesson, 2002). Employees in an organization should learn to embrace their diversity as important facets of business success through marring into the culture of an organization the employers on the other hand should be keen to foster this culture into the employees so as to succeed in standing out as a business. Organizational culture is the heart of a god business and a lot of effort is required to maintain it, strategies to foster this is as important as the success of the business.

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