所在系 学生姓名 专 班 业 级
管理系 XXXX 工商管理 工商 X01 班 学号 XXXX 07020480
2013 年 6 月
The Evolution of the Culture of Enterprise
At the top echelons of contemporary business, managers are becoming concerned with the unsustainability of the way companies now operate. A transformation of basic business strategies appears more and more indicated. For such transformation to be effective, the culture of the enterprise--the goals it pursues and the vision of these goals entertained by managers and collaborators--needs to change. Consequently there is a growing questioning of the viability of the typical culture of today's enterprise, and a search for more functional and timely concepts for creating anew and more timely cultural pattern.
The leading edge of the globally operating world of business is becoming keenly concerned with changes in today's social, economic, and ecologic environment. At the top echelons of management an intense search is under way for up-to-date modes of thinking and acting. It comes to the fore in the emphasis managers place on corporate strategy, corporate identity, corporate philosophy, even corporate ethics. An organizational revolution is underway, as managers seek to communicate their vision with their collaborators. The importance of communication among all branches and levels of the enterprise is becoming recognized. It is also recognized that the company can only function when people under-stand what goals management pursues, and what their own role is in the achievement of the goals. Enterprise culture The ongoing transformation of the enterprise culture is a positive factor in our changing and unpredictable world. It means that companies are becoming more sensitive to the changes that obtain in their environment, and more ready to respond to them. The new emphasis on management and company ethics also suggests that businesses are willing to assume the responsibility that goes with their larger role in society. Global enterprises wield unprecedented power and influence, and the transformation of their culture will be a critical factor in deciding the evolution of our interdependent socio-economic and ecologic systems–and therewith our individual and collect future.
The transformation of the enterprise culture is timely: the company culture dominant for most of this century became obsolete. It focused on the workings of the enterprise without much regard for its social and ecologic environment; it operated on the premise that the business of business is business--if it comes up with good products or services, it fulfills all its obligations vis-a-vis society and nature. The self-centered methods of the traditional management philosophy no longer produce acceptable results--they are like concentrating all one's skills on flying an airplane and paying scant attention to the airspace in which one is flying. The captains of contemporary business cannot be solely concerned with the internal functioning of their aircraft: they must also set a course in reference to climatic conditions, current position and projected destination, and the traffic on the network of routes criss-crossing the globe. That traffic is diversified and complex. It includes, in addition to customers, suppliers, distributors, R&D partners, technology subcontractors, and governmental departments and ministries, and numerous other cooperative and competitive aircraft, together with the social, ecologic, and even cultural milieu of the various bases of operation.
Global companies no longer resemble a giant mechanism, controlled by those on top. This is new in the history of modern business. For most of the 20th century, top management could command the company structures without being influenced by, or even much concerned with, its lower echelons. Motivation for task-fulfillment was created by material incentives bolstered by threats; individual creativity and initiative were dismissed as unnecessary nuisance. Power was concentrated, together with responsibility and overview; middle management had access only to the information that was immediately relevant to its tasks. Following the recipes prescribed in Frederick Taylor's "scientific management", the distribution of tasks was established at headquarters and the company's functions were divided into individual work components. Planning was based on a belief in control and predictability, effects were traced to causes, and causes were quantitatively analyzed. Company operations based on cause-effect chains were given value independent of time and place: as in a machine, it was held that the same input would always produce the same output. This was the philosophy of the leading companies of the 20th century; the model for success at General Motors and Standard Oil, and the rest of the Fortune 500 group.
The economic growth-environment of the post-war period did not provide grounds to modify, or even question, this philosophy. Almost anything an enterprising manager would try had a knack of succeeding; he could even engage in personal bravado. Technological progress seemed assured, and expanding markets seemed to distribute the benefits of growth. The post-war economy welcomed all entrepreneurs; they could grow as the economy did. Long-term costs, if any, were hidden in the long term. In that regard businessmen were fond of quoting Keynes: in the long term we shall all be dead. If things get better and better, why bother to look further than one's nose? There was no need to worry whether or not there would be progress, it was enough to guess what shape it would take, and how the company could benefit from it.
In the 1970s and '80s the situation had changed. The economic growth curve flattened out and optimistic extrapolations failed to come true. Social alienation and anomie rose, and technology produced unexpected side-effects: scares and catastrophes at Three Mile Island, Bhopal, and Chernobyl, the ozone hole over the Antarctic, recurrent instances of acid rain and oil spill, and worsening environmental pollution in cities and on land. Belief in progress was shaken. Intellectuals and youth groups found it necessary, and some segments of society fashionable, to espouse the view that technological advance is dangerous and should be halted. Environmental effects and social value-change began to enter as factors in the equations of corporate success, and leading managers, together with consultants and management theorists, began to reexamine their operative assumptions.
By the late 1980s further changes occurred in the operating environment. Environmental concerns moved from the fringes of society into the marketplace; people proved amenable to paying higher prices for products they deemed environmentally friendly; and they were known to boycott companies that remained environmentally polluting or unresponsive. New information and communication technologies came on line, markets became integrated and internationalized, product cycles became shorter and product lines diversified, and clients and consumers demanded shorter delivery times and higher quality. Competition moved into the
global arena. Under these circumstances classically run hierarchical enterprises proved unable to cope. The centralization of information and its slow one-way penetration to lower echelons produced fatal mistakes-and then terminal rigidity. The companies that survived did so by transforming themselves into team-oriented multi-level decision-making and implementation structures, often in the nick of time.
In the late 1990s the diffusion of information and the growth in the intensity and number of interfaces between people, departments, and divisions have radically changed the company's operative structures. Not only information, also people emerged as the key resource of the enterprise; teamwork proved to be the best way this resource could be tapped. The boundary between the company and its economic, social, and ecologic environment turned fuzzy. Within the business sphere fusions, alliances, and partnerships became commonplace. In many cases the core activities of the enterprise came to be sub-contracted, and work relations with other firms became as operative as company-based organizational structures. Reliance on distributors and suppliers, and linkage to local communities and ecologies turned into standard parameters of corporate functioning.
Under these circumstances, there is a dire need for new and adapted management concepts. There is no dearth of advice. Theorists speak of activity bundling and the company' capacity to sustainably capture the highest portion of the total industry value-added chain's profit margin; strategy specialists emphasize the need for management to focus on dynamic competitive positioning and customer-driven processes; technology consultants stress the importance of anticipatory R&D in both products and processes; and organizational experts insist on the need for learning within net-worked teams operating beyond established company structures. Leading managers realize that their vision of the company's functioning within its global environment, and its adaptability to changes and trends in that environment, is at least equal in importance to their ability to formulate strategy and carry out operations.
Management guru Tom Peters called intellectual capital a company's greatest resource, and consultants Gary Hamel and C.K.Prahalad named future vision its greatest competitive
advantage, more valuable than a large bank account or a lean organization. Managers who possess intellectual capital and future vision have a sense of purpose, avoid wasting time on useless experiments and dead-ends, and elicit deep commitment from their collaborators. In today's world effective leadership calls for a sound knowledge not only of current company operations and resources, but of its ability to reach strategic, financial, and organizational objectives in the years ahead. This requires considerable acumen. Because the future, as Charles Handy pointed out, could be most anything, but is not likely to be a continuation of the past.
Though the enterprise needs a new and different culture, that culture must be efficient: it must enable executives to cope with ever less predictable economic conditions; offer sufficient flexibility to use new technologies as they come on line; develop adaptability for the company to enter new fields of activity and leave old ones as the opportunities present themselves; and keep track of the growing interdependence of the company with its partners and competitors and its economic and financial environment. But the new culture must also be ethical. It must recognize the impacts of the enterprise on society and on nature, and even on the conditions that we bequeath on future generations. And it must be ready to accept responsibility for these impacts.
Accepting responsibility in the sphere of society and nature is not only good common sense, it is also good business sense. There are no longer definite boundaries where where a company ends and society and nature begins. The basic enduring interests of the enterprise and its social and ecological environment coincide. What is good for society and for nature is also good for the company--hence what is ultimately good for the company must also be good for society and for nature. This coincidence of interests will not change in the future; on the contrary, it will become more pronounced. The successful managers of the future will be those that recognize this fact and act on it. They will be effective as well as ethical: leaders of responsible corporate citizens in the global socio-economic-ecological system that is already emerging worldwide. Corporate culture Corporate culture is the glue, if you will, that holds an organization together. It incorporates an
organization’s values, its norms of behavior, its policies and its procedures. The most important influence on corporate culture is the national culture of the country in which the corporation is based. That may seem obvious, but there are other factors that also help to shape a corporation’s culture—its views of and its interactions with the ―outside world.‖ The ownership structure of the company will go a long way in defining a corporate culture. For example, the culture of a family-owned firm is likely to be quite different from that of a publicly held company. Also, the industry that the corporation is part of will help shape its cultural values. For example, a high-tech computer software firm (a relatively young industry) is likely to have a much more informal and entrepreneurial culture than say that of an investment bank (a mature industry). And, likewise, an organization in a service industry will have a different culture than that of a manufacturing or mining company. Differences in the corporate culture of organizations in the same home culture and industry may still be profound—sometimes as profound as the differences between national cultures themselves. Corporate-culture components Like national culture, corporate culture has some basic components that make up the whole. While national cultural components include such things as language, religion, and humor, the components of corporate culture tend to be more utilitarian. No one single component can reveal the true internal make-up of a corporation but when they are taken as a whole, they present a clear picture of a company’s values and goals. The key corporate cultural components are: ? The system of rewards
What type of employee behavior is appreciated and rewarded? Do risk takers move up in management ranks or does the corporation reward loyalty and long-term service instead? ? Hiring decisions
The type of individual a company hires says much about its culture. Is a company ready to grow and accept new ideas by hiring a diverse workforce or is it content to keep hiring the same type of individual to build a homogeneous workforce? ? Management structure
Does the corporation have a rigid hierarchical structure? Is it managed by an executive
committee or a dominating chairman? ? Risk-taking strategy
What is the corporation’s view of risk? Does it encourage taking chances, trying new products and markets? Or is it content with well-established markets and products? ? Physical setting
Is the office an open plan that encourages communication and a sense of egalitarianism? Or are management offices segregated from the staff workplace? Is headquarter a monument to ownership or a functional working environment? National cultural influences As explained previously, Asians place a high value on concept associated with social harmony, while Westerners put greater emphasis on individuals’ rights and responsibilities. It is no surprise to find that Japanese corporations almost always place great emphasis on group harmony in their corporate cultures. They design a system that rewards conformity, hire staff that is relatively homogeneous and tend to shy away from risk-taking and the entrepreneurial spirit. By the same token, it should be no surprise that many American corporations are likely to hire an entrepreneurial type and reward risk. There is no escaping the fact that a national culture shapes corporate responsibilities, practices and traditions.
A pair of studies, one regarding six Asian nations completed in 1996 by Wirthlin Worldwide, and one regarding North America conducted in 1994 by David I. Hitchcock of the center for strategic and International Studies, revealed striking differences between the most cherished values of Asian and North American business executives. These studies underscore the point that national cultures do have paramount influence on the formation of corporate cultures. In Asia the top seven values listed by executives were: 1. hard work 2. respect for learning 3. honesty 4. openness to new ideas 5. accountability
6. self-discipline 7. self-reliance The top seven north American (United States and Canada)values were: 1. freedom of expression 2. personal freedom 3. self-reliance 4. individual rights 5. hard work 6. personal achievement 7. thinking for one’s self Cause and effect If you look at the traits emphasized by the business executives, you can begin to build a corporate culture—albeit a stereotype—of an Asian firm and a North American firm and to understand the differences in management technique and skills between Asian corporations and North American ones. In Asia, there is no mention of individual rights or any hint of reward for ―thinking for one’s self.‖ Hence, the type of organizational structure that5 has emerged across Asia is one of a very hierarchical, bureaucratic corporation that values such intangibles as ―respect for learning‖ and ―honesty.‖ By the same token, taking the values stressed by North American executives, you would expect to find corporations that are less structured and more entrepreneurial than Japanese ones—and, in general, that is very much the case. Remember, though, that within the same home culture, you still get vast differences in corporate culture. While IBM and Compaq may be in the same country and in the same industry, their corporate cultures in many ways are different.
One interesting footnote from these studies was that female Asian executives had a value profile that more closely resembled that of North American. Asian women focus more on independence and self-reliance while Asian men focus more on harmony and order. This difference may be due to the fact that women have been shut out of the ―old boys’ network‖ and have been forced to rely more on entrepreneurial skills than Asian males to succeed.
Profitable corporate culture The concept of corporate culture is all well and good but does the concept have any measurable impact on a corporation’s bottom line or on staff behavior? It certainly does, though the impact is difficult to quantify. Having a strong corporate culture provides a clear sense of identity for staff, clarifies behavior and expectations and usually makes decision making fairly easy because so much is already defined. People know where they stand and what is expected of them. However, a strong corporate culture also has a downside. Any corporation that has an entrenched culture will find change difficult. The inabilities to be flexible, to act quickly and to change rapidly are all competitive disadvantages in the global market economy. A weak corporate culture will simply have little influence on employee behavior.
Then it comes to the bottom line, it is important for a corporation to have a culture of accountability. With a strong accountability culture, a corporation can avoid imposing a costly monitoring system which often hurts employee morale and diminishes productivity.
Finally, if you have a weak or mistrusting corporate culture, employees will vote ―with their feet.‖ In a tight labor market the bad workers will drive out the good and the situation gets even worse. A corporation will always need some type of controls but the goal is to have as few controls as possible—just enough to ensure that people don’t violate the rules. Employee reactions In truth, measuring the positive or negative impact of a corporate culture on a company’s bottom line remains an elusive goal. Most companies do not quantify the effects of corporate culture. According to a 1996 global survey of business executives in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Holland, the United Kingdom and the United states done by the consultants Proudfoot PLC, only38 percent of companies indicated that they measured the effects of their efforts to change corporate culture. Yet 86 percent claimed their culture change programs are successful. Methods of measurement included employee surveys the most common practice overall), meetings, independent surveys and informal feedback. Despite the inability to measure impact, more than half of all executives surveyed (52percent) felt that corporate culture
contributes a great deal to the success of their companies. They just couldn’t say how much with any great amount of certainty. Views of success The main goal of any corporation is to be successful. But how you define success will, of course, have an impact on how you organize our business and its culture. Again, the influence of national culture and local expectations play a paramount role in determining the corporate view. Wirthlin Consulting’s Worldwide Monitor finds what consumers in 13 countries view as for a corporation. Most consumers said producing the very best products and services defined success (indicating their individualistic cultures). However, in Japan, the most notable attribute was caring about the country’s social and environmental needs—a throwback to the culture’s emphasis on the importance of the group over the individual. In Italy, if a company was well run and well managed, then it was thought to be successful--an indication of concern about that culture’s history of chaotic politics and business management. In Mexico, a stable and profitable corporation was the benchmark of success. From these responses you can see the difficulties of attempting to set up a corporate culture that can effectively move across borders and meet the diverse needs of consumers in different countries. The ideal corporate culture It would be impossible to give precise detail on what the perfect type of corporate culture should be for a global company. It depends so much on the cultures you are operating in, the subject industry and the basic cultural components. However, there are some basic traits: Any culture needs to develop a sense of accountability among staff and employees. It needs to be coherently transmitted across cultures. If it is too akin to the headquarters’ culture, employees simply won’t accept it. Think locally, act consistently. While flexibility is important, there must be a consistent application of principles across cultures. It must be attuned to the competitive requirements of the world market and be able to change to adapt to new market conditions.
Ervin Laszlo， The Journal of General Evolution. 1998, Vol. 52. pp. 181-186.
欧文.拉斯洛 在当代商业的高层阶级中，经理们开始考虑不能保持公司现在的运行模式。基本商 业策略的改变正变得原来越明显。 由于这种转变的影响， 企业文化——追求的目标以及这 些目标如何被经理们和合伙人们演绎——需要改变。 因此出现了愈来愈多的对于当代企业 的传统文化方式的生存能力的质疑， 以及寻找更加有效与与符合当代思想的观念去创造一 个新的，更加合适的文化形式。 商业全球化运作的世界前沿正在明锐的考虑着当今世界在社会，经济，生态环境方 面的变化。在高级管理层，正在当代的思考与行为模式下积极的探索。强调经理在公司策 略，企业标志，企业哲学，甚至企业道德中的地位越来越惹人注意。 一个组织上的革命 正在进行， 经理寻求与他们合伙人之间的想法上交流。 企业所有分支与阶级之间的交流的 重要性正在被考虑。 它也考虑到只有当人们理解管理层所追求的目标和他们在实现这个目 标的过程中扮演着什么角色的时候，公司才能够运转。 在我们变化和不可预知的世界， 迫切地改造企业文化是一个积极因素。 这意味着企业 变得越加敏感来应对变化的环境,并获得更愿意的回应。新的重点放在管理，伴随着大的 社会上的角色，企业伦理也表明愿意承担责任。全球企业持前所未有的权力和影响,改造 他们的文化将是一个关键的因素在一定程度上决定了我们的相互依存的经济发展与进化 生态。 变革企业文化是企业文化的主导，那即是:大半个世纪成了过时。它着眼于企业的运 作不需要太多的关心它的社会和生态环境的前提下,它运作的业务交易就是交易——如果 它符合优良的产品或服务,它实现了它所有的与社会和自然的义务。以自我为中心的传统 的管理哲学的方法——不再获得满意效果,他们就像集中所有的技能的驾驶员驾驶飞机, 在其中你飞行，全神贯注。机长不能仅仅关注当代内部的运作:他们必须设置飞机在这一 过程中参考的气候条件,当前位置和预计的目的地,交通网络的路由球。多种多样,交通和 复杂的。它包括了客户、供应商、分销商、研发合作伙伴、技术转包商,并政府部门和部 门和许多其他的合作和竞争的飞机,配合社会、生态、甚至文化环境的各种运作。 跨国公司不再像一个巨大的机制,受控于那些总部。这是新的历史上的现代企业。对 于 20 世纪的大多数高层管理人员可以控制公司不受结构,甚至多关心,其较低的学府。动 机是由物质的刺激支持的； 个人创造力和主动性被解雇是不必要的令人讨厌的东西。 集中 力量,连同中层管理责任相关到他的任务来。 伴随这些规定， 弗雷德里克?泰勒的科学管理、 任务分配的总部和建立公司的职能分为个人工作部件。 计划是基于一个信任控制效果和可 预见性,追溯到原因并进行定量分析。公司营运在因果的基础上给出了独立于时间和地点
的价值:就像一台机器,它认为相同的输入总是产生相同的输出。这是 20 世纪领先的企业 哲学，通用公司、标准石油公司、其余的财富 500 强在这个模型下成功了。 经济成长环境的战后时期没有提供理由修改该理念或质疑。 几乎任何一个有事业心的 经理都有一个成功的诀窍,他甚至可以个人虚张声势罢了。 技术进步的保证,市场拓展的好 处似乎分发增长。战后经济，欢迎所有的企业家，他们能够复苏经济。长期的成本,如果 有的话,被隐藏在长期的发展。 在这方面,商人喜欢引用凯恩斯的观点:从长远看来,我们都 要死了。 如果事情变得越来越好,为什么自找麻烦去考虑更多的障碍?没有必要去担心是否 会有进步,但它足以想要什么形状,公司可以从中受益。 企业文化是胶水,如果你愿意,持有一个组织在一起。它包含了一个组织的价值观、 规范行为、政策和程序。最重要的影响是企业文化是民族文化的国家,公司是基础。这似 乎是显而易见的,但也有一些其他的因素也有助于形成一个公司的这些观点及其互动的 “外面的世界。 ”公司的所有权结构将长期定义一个企业文化。 例如一个家族的文化公司 很可能是很不同的,从单纯的公开举行的公司。同时,产业的一部分,公司将帮助形状的文 化价值观。 例如,一个高科技电脑软件公司的一个较为年轻的行业(可能有一个非常非正式 和创业文化说,一家投资银行(一个成熟的工业部门)。一个组织,同样,在服务产业会有一 个不同的文化比制造业或矿业公司。 在企业文化的差异组织在同一家文化与产业可能仍然 是深远的民族文化的差异自己。民族文化、企业文化具有一些基本组件。而民族文化的组 成部分包括诸如语言、宗教、幽默,企业文化的成分更趋于功利。没有一个单独的组件可 以展现真正的公司内部,但是当他们被视为一个整体,他们清楚的呈现出一个公司的价值 观和目标。 1996 年建成一个关于六个亚洲国家的一个研究, Wirthlin 在 1994 年于北美进行的。 希区柯克的战略与国际问题研究中心之间的明显差异,揭示出最珍视的价值观的亚洲和北 美的公司高管。 这些研究强调这一点,那就是民族文化有极为重要的影响,是企业文化的形 成。 亚洲的七大价值观: 1.努力工作 2.尊重学习 3.诚实 4.接受新概念 5.负责 6.自律 7.自力更生 北美(美国和加拿大)七大价值观: 1.表达的自由
2.个人的自由 3.自力更生 4.个人权利 5.努力工作 6.个人的成就 7.自省 理想的企业文化： 它不可能给出精确的细节， 完美类型的企业文化应该是一个全球性的公司。 这取决于 你的运营文化、主体产业和基础文化组件。然而,有一些基本的特点: 任何文化需要建立一个在员工和雇员之间的责任感。 它需要跨文化传播。如果它低于总部的文化、员工根本不会接受它。 认为行为具有一致性。而弹性是很重要的,必须有一个一致的应用原则,跨越文化。 它必须协调到世界市场竞争的要求,并且能够改变来适应新的市场形势。
欧文.拉斯洛《一般进化论》杂志，1998.52 卷. pp. 181-186.