You are on page 1of 7

RUNNING HEAD: FOUNDERS CULTURE & COMMUNICATION

Team 2 Week 3, Discussion Summary


Mary Ann Cozad, Shane Gray
LDR630
Siena Heights University, Graduate College
11/11/2016

FOUNDERS CULTURE & COMMUNICATION

Summary
Culture Defined
According to Madu (2004), organizational culture is defined as values, beliefs, and
behaviors that differentiate one organization from another (p. 2, para. 1). A majority of the
workers in the organization will abide behaviorally in accordance with the stated values (p. 3,
para 2). The ethical standards of an organization, generally are reflective of the organizational
culture, and are derived from the organizations core values, such as honesty, trust, and loyalty
(p. 3, para. 4).
Formation of culture
The very nature of an organizational culture was stated by Morley and Zalabak (1991), as
an individuals values, beliefs, and assumptions, in reference to what they see as an ideal
organizational life, based on their perceptions of organizational reality and the level of their
satisfaction, as it relates to overall organizational quality and effectiveness (p. 22, para. 5). Just
as the founders create their organizations culture, based on their assumptions, which they enter
into the business with, that culture is embedded and transmitted through both implicit and
explicit messages such as formal statements of organizational philosophy, design of physical
space, deliberate role modeling, teaching, and coaching by leaders (p. 23, para. 8).
Founders role in continuing the culture
Nelson (2003), stated that the founder is involved highly in a firm, up to a point of the
firm being operational. Upper management generally continues in the operation, carrying the
founders influence forward (p. 709). In organizations where the founder continues in a role that
makes them visible throughout the organization, they may become a focal point for other
decision makers because of their knowledge, experience, and organizational stature (p. 710).
Thereby, continuing the cultural norms through their influence over others decisions.

FOUNDERS CULTURE & COMMUNICATION

Culture and success


Vallejo (2001), introduced a three-level system, which is made up of the following subsystems: ownership, business, and family. In an organization where family members are the
agents, who work together, the following three pillars comprise its organizational culture:
regulative, cognitive and normative. The normative represents why cultural values are existent
throughout the organization; not only in family members, but non-family members, as well. The
transmission of the organizational values is representative of the cognitive pillar, which focuses
on the non-family members willingness to accept the organizational culture, as established by
the family members. The impact that the family firm has on the organizations environment is
evident within the internal culture, and is generally noticeable within the external community
culture as well. Thereby generating the benefits of success for the organization, based on the
sharing of its culture with the surrounding community.
Cultural harmony
According to Groat & Stern (2002), employees are most satisfied and do their best
work when their individual values are closely aligned with those of their organization (p. 42).
An organization might analyze a values driven approach, in reference to communicating to the
workforce. Exploring the organizational culture and its work practices, while attempting to
transform the workforce, in an effort to meld them with the cultural norms, should be a practice
that takes place through communication, which begins prior to hiring an employee, and
continues while they remain employed.
Cultural communication foundation
From inception, an organization founder must also design intangible aspects of culture
such as beliefs, ideologies, and language or climate of communication. These facets are
dependent upon each other and are paramount to integration, power, and fidelity. Conceptually,

FOUNDERS CULTURE & COMMUNICATION

these abstracts emphasize cognizant and intentional assembling, interpretation of meaning,


strategic codifying in fluctuant leadership, and the development of standard practices. One may
posit this represents the quintessence of culture itself. It may be likened to the chicken-egg
duality. Is man a construct of culture, or is culture a construct of man? (Pettigrew, 1979).
Communication as a relationship
Vision, mission, and organizational expectations are propagated through the founders
intrinsic behavior. Followers unconsciously rely on reciprocal discourse for homogenous
guidance whether it be simply an exchange of niceties or rather complex commerce decision
making (Pettigrew, 1979). Enabling follower empowerment, interdepartmental collaboration,
offering training opportunities, and granting rewards are all prime forms of open communication
which may enhance performance (Hayek, Williams, Taneja, & Salem, 2015).
Sustaining founder organization growth
Providing the founder correctly foresees future potential and adjusts initial assumptions,
Clifford (1975) suggests key structural strategies to safeguard smooth transitioning in growth
spurts. The purpose of this is to ease the most likely inundated founder so that he or she may
focus on the overall direction and product development of the company. Perhaps the two most
integral processes are employing external counselors and instituting oversight committees in
addition to positioning and delegating quality managers within departments.
Organizational growth is necessary for continued financial survival and prosperity.
Change is a natural continuum. Perseverance demands transparency, direction, and a strict
avoidance of micromanagement tactics. With the addition of properly vetted managers, trust
should be a focal point (Schein, 1983).
Communication cohesiveness
Founders have a propensity to take a holistic approach due to an inherent personal

FOUNDERS CULTURE & COMMUNICATION


identity attachment. Central to organizational group cohesion, is perpetual communication with
all stakeholders. This is necessary to understand an organizations lifework. Transmission of
information is a derivative of embedded culture and must not be underestimated (Schein, 1983).

FOUNDERS CULTURE & COMMUNICATION

References:
Clifford, D. (1975). The case of the floundering founder. Organizational Dynamics, 4(2), 20.
Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/210589022?accountid=28644
Groat, L., & Stern, L. (2002). Cultivating organizational values: A new model for workplace
planning. The Journal for Quality and Participation, 25(4), 40-43. Retrieved from
http://search.proquest.com/docview/219153695?accountid=28644
Hayek, M., Williams,Wallace A.,,Jr, Taneja, S., & Salem, R. (2015). Effective succession of
social entrepreneurs: A stewardship-based model. Journal of Applied Management and
Entrepreneurship, 20(2), 93. Retrieved from
http://search.proquest.com/docview/1681254607?accountid=28644
Madu, B. (2004). Organization culture as driver of competitive advantage. Journal of academic
and business ethics. Retrieved from http://www.aabri.com/manuscripts/11791.pdf
Morley, D. D., & -Zalabak, P. S. (1991). Setting the rules: An examination of the influence of
organizational founders' values. Management Communication Quarterly: McQ (19861998), 4(4), 422. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/232855391?
accountid=28644
Nelson, T. (2003). The persistence of founder influence: Management, ownership, and
performance effects at initial public offering. Strategic Management Journal, 24(8), 707724. doi:10.1002/smj.328
Pettigrew, A. (1979). On Studying Organizational Cultures. Administrative Science Quarterly,
24(4), 570-581. doi:10.2307/2392363
Schein, E. (1983). The role of the founder in creating organizational culture. Journal of the
Family Firm Institute. Retrieved from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.17416248.1995.00221.x/epdf

FOUNDERS CULTURE & COMMUNICATION


Vallejo, M. C. (2011). A model to study the organizational culture of the family firm. Small
Business Economics, 36(1), 47-64. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11187-009-9175-9