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Strategic Cultural Interventions at Wal-Mart - Research Paper Example

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Strategic Cultural Interventions at Wal-Mart

It is against this backdrop that Louis (1980) is quoted by the Air University (2003) as explaining that organizational culture is “a set of understandings or meanings shared by a group of people that are largely tacit among members and are clearly relevant and distinctive to the particular group which are also passed on to new members”. The discussions above point to the fact that the organizational culture of an organization cannot be over emphasized, overlooked or underestimated in any way. As much as possible, all corporations and organizations must make it a prime priority of achieving a socially and commercially welcoming organizational culture. Because of this, this essay has been set out to critically look into the organizational culture of Wal-Mart Company, looking at the company’s present organizational culture and evaluating how the present culture has impacted on the successes of the company and if any, suggest the way forward for the company in terms of its organizational culture. Current Organizational Culture Giving a clear cut definition or description of the organizational culture of Wal-Mart may be very difficult. This is because the public and especially the media tend to portray the company and many different ways. These ambiguities not withstanding, careful review of literature and scrutiny of media reports point to some common characteristics that run through the company and can therefore be generalized to be the company’s organizational culture. In the first place, Wal-Mart has and believes in the culture of respect. The company portrays a high sense and level of respect for all its stakeholders including customers, suppliers and associates. The company also practices an open door system of governance whereby there is an open communication channel for all stakeholders; especially customers and suppliers to get their ideas through. There also is what the company refers to as the Sundown rules. With this culture, the company answers to requests even after the company’s usual closing hours. This is done in a bid to foster the culture of respect for meeting the customer at the point of his or her needs. Finally, there is an assumed and supposed servant leadership culture at Wal-Mart whereby it is said that Sam Walton, founder of Wal-Mart said that “"It's more important than ever that we develop leaders who are servants, who listen to their partners – their associates – in a way that creates wonderful morale to help the whole team accomplish an overall goal,”” (Wal-Mart, 2011). Assessment of the current organizational culture of Wal-Mart using Deep Assumption Model Having discussed the organizational culture of Wal-Mart above, this section of the write-up shall be used to give deep assumptions interpretations to assess the current organizational culture of the company. Cummings and Worley (2009) explain that deep assumptions are very important because they represent the deepest levels of an organization’s culture that is generally unexamined. These assumptions shall be considered because as Cummings and Worley (2009) put it, they are “tacit and shared assumptions that guide member behavior and that often have a powerful impact on organization effectiveness.” Among some unexamined assumptions behind the culture of Wal-Ma ...Show more

Summary

Strategic Cultural Interventions at Wal-Mart Introduction Most people pay attention to the organizational culture of an organization or a company merely for the sake of using the organizational culture to identify or describe the company. However, a lot more go into the organizational culture of various companies and corporations than mere self identity (Wiredu, 2003)…
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