Discuss the following:
1. Culture systems are very complex and contain structures that are both formal and informal. The formal systems, according to Trevino and Nelson (2014), include executive leadership, orientation and training, performance management, and more while the informal systems involve norms, rituals, language, and myths. For a culture to be strong, the formal and informal systems need to send the same message. Since executive leaders are the ones who create and maintain the culture it is important that they have a strong believe in the company culture and that they act as a role model for the behaviors required. In addition to demonstrating the desired behavior, leaders need to hold their next level management accountable for also acting in the desired manner. In this way, the ethics and value message is clearly demonstrated and individuals have a strong guide to follow for culturally acceptable traits, behaviors, communication, and decision making.
In the company that I work at now, the annual performance reviews were recently reevaluated and changed to conform to the company culture. It was determined that the method of the reviews was no longer in alignment with the culture of the company. Instead management had shifted the reviews into a form that was never desired. A complete overhaul of the performance evaluations has been conducted with support from the president of the organization and positive praise from middle management. This is a simple example of how managers were aware enough of the formal, and informal, cultural system to realize a process was no longer in alignment with the company culture. They then took action to bring the metric in relation with the company culture. The formal system was the direct performance review while the informal system was how each manger conducted the meeting in a different manner. It is very important for managers to be aware of the formal and informal cultural systems and to act to ensure that the company is continuing to move in the desire position.
Trevino, L., & Nelson, K. (2014). Managing Business Ethics: Straight Talk about How to Do It Right (6th ed.). John Wiley & Sons
2. My experience dealing with informal and formal cultural systems at my current place of work has been extensive in a formal setting and lacking in an informal setting. Strong culture, standards and guidelines are widely shared within the organization, providing common direction for day to day behavior (Trevino 2014). In the beginning of my employment the culture and expectations were drilled into new hires in the first week of employment. There I was able to decipher how I would fit within the culture of my school and how I would ensure security for my students in my classroom. Over the last couple years there have been conversations amongst employees of their ideas surrounding differing opinions over what is right and what is unclear.
This conversation has opened up a potential rift. Formal and informal systems must be aligned to support ethical behavior (Trevino 2014). In the department in which I work, athletics is all but forgotten about. Instead of being used as a tool to encourage students to perform better in academics it is reserved for the few that can maintain the rigorous standards held by the school. My manager comes from a perspective of if you can excel in the classroom than you may be able to on the playing field as well. The case is not the same with all of our students and my hope is to while building a more sound athletic culture at our school not sacrificing the academic excellence that the school requires of its students.
My suggestions to bring the academic culture in to combine with the athletics culture would be to change a couple small aspects. I am seeking to change policies surrounding eligibility requirements for grades for those who choose to participate in athletics. Other ideas would be to bring more opportunities for all students, athletes, academics, arts and all kids to interact to use athletics as a platform to bring students together. Once all students can celebrate all aspects of their school then the culture will be complete throughout the organization.
Trevino, L. Nelson, K. Managing Business Ethics: Straight Talk about How to Do it Right. (6th Edition(2014). Wiley & Sons.