The impact of this culture cannot be underestimated. Corporate culture can be the "the hardest part of managing any enterprise...," and those companies that "know how to develop their cultures effectively enjoy significant advantages in both the productivity of their organizations and the quality of work life for employees" (Schulz 2001: 29). In Selfridges' management's approach, the company has set forth a corporate culture that, in part, seeks to bring personal responsibility into the workplace. This approach touches the needs of employees to engage in meaningful and responsible employment.
A second notable result of the Selfridges' approach to culture is to provide for individual employee enrichment. The company actually accomplishes this by using the principle of job autonomy and team accountability to provide the individual worker with a sense of significant contribution to the final product. As each employee devotes himself to the process at hand, they are personally enriched by knowing that they are making a positive contribution to the overall operational goals of the organization; they see that the corporate goal is being accomplished through their own effort. This makes a significant impact upon the morale of the workforce because they are allowed to see the larger picture. They are not just employed in, for example, selling clothing. They are a part of a larger family that is supplying a valuable service to customers.
Management, by choice or by necessity, oversees two types of HRM change; incremental change or the more dramatic transformational change (Conger, et. al 1999: 223). In the course of controlling the process, executives should seek to build and maintain an amicable and trustworthy change management methodology to ensure an enthusiastic workforce and a positive workplace environment. Management will never successfully implement an efficient transition if employees do not have confidence in them; yet they are vital in bringing about changes that impact the corporate culture:
Organizations develop cultures that incorporate the values and practices of their leaders. Culture evolves through the accumulation of actions and events the members of an organization experience. Leaders-especially the organization's founders--play a key role in this evolutionary process. They, more than any other actor, are critical in structuring experiences within the group that point toward desired results.
Leaders also emphasize some experiences over others and, in this way, further focus the acculturation process.
(Fairholm 1994: 67)
It is within the implementation of a new or altered culture-such as a change HRM approach-that employee confidence has its greatest impact on the workplace environment (Creech 1995: 35). It is a simple fact that HRM involves people talking to people. If management has been trustworthy and straightforward with its workers, they are going to be much more receptive to the changes that are being made. In a changing environment such as Selfridges, an executive or team leader that has a bad relationship with his people-or no relationship at all-could create an antagonistic