Academic journal article Journal of Organizational Culture, Communications and Conflict

The Fit between the Concepts of Organizational Culture and Climate

Academic journal article Journal of Organizational Culture, Communications and Conflict

The Fit between the Concepts of Organizational Culture and Climate

Article excerpt

ABSTRACT

The purpose of this paper is to clarify the nature of the complex interrelations between organizational culture and climate. In terms of the basic assumptions, values and beliefs, it is the culture of an organization which dictates the expected employee behavior permits to form a compatible work environment, namely, the organizational climate. The key point is that these two concepts exist in work settings, and they are not mutually exclusive. This study is conducted from the behaviorist approaches of organizational theorists such as (Schein, 1992; Denison, 1996; Cameron and Quinn, 2006), and focuses on the examination of the match between a shared value system, organizational culture, and its reflection on daily business practices, organizational climate. Two different sampling procedures and three measurement instruments were used in four organizations in the present study. The first sample frame covers all of the managerial and administrative staff from three organizations, with the sample size comprising 121 respondents. The second sampling frame includes the first two organizations and another one covering 145 respondents.

The research findings indicate that there is a fit between the concepts of organizational culture and climate with statistical analyses indicating a meaningful composition of cultural and climatic variables. The organizational values which are related to the stability and control (i.e. bureaucratic nature) of organizations clearly separated from the rest of the values. In turn, the values which are about the flexibility and discretion are related to corresponding climatic features (such as decision making, interpersonal relations, and communication). The establishment of such a fit between these conceptual elements could possibly lead organizational behaviorists and practitioners, to have a clearer picture of the contextual structure of organizations and to take the necessary measures to maintain or to change certain values and business practices, thus planning changes in strategies more effectively. It would also be of help for human resources departments both for employee selection, and planning programs for designing interventions to improve organizational effectiveness and efficiency.

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THE FIT BETWEEN THE CONCEPTS OF ORGANIZATIONAL CULTURE AND CLIMATE

This paper (1) focuses on the assessment of the interactions and overlap between the concepts of organizational culture and climate through an empirical investigation conducted in Turkey. Organizational culture has become a subject in which conceptual work and scholarship provides guidance for managers (Cameron & Quinn, 2006; p. 16). This study is not cross cultural per se. However, since the term science can be characterized, among others, as being objective and universalistic, the location of the sample of the present study should be looked at as a scientific attempt aiming at the corroboration or the falsification of the relevant theories (Popper, 1963; pp. 233-240; Denison, Haaland & Goelzer, 2004; p.98). This should be true regardless of the economic, sociological and cultural differences in the environments where these studies are conducted.

The purpose of this paper is to clarify the nature of the complex interrelations between organizational culture and climate. In terms of the basic assumptions, values and beliefs, it is the culture of an organization which dictates the expected employee behavior permits to form a compatible work environment, namely, the organizational climate. The present study relies on the behaviorist approaches of organizational theorists such as Schein (1992). Since employee behaviors are the reflections of organizational culture, there ought to be a fit between the roots of culture (such as basic assumptions and values), and the rules and daily business practices of employees (i.e. climate). In terms of the internal and external dynamics of organizations, this theoretical approach is, inevitably, in line with Martin's (2002) integration and differentiation perspectives as well as Cameron and Quinn's (2006) competing values model. …

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