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Philosophy of Culture

Optimize Blog - February 3, 2014 - 0 comments

Individuals have an identity and so do organizations. An organization’s identity is derived from its Purpose (the fundamental reason why the organization exists) and it’s Philosophy (its enduring, guiding principles). These are the central attributes that define the character of the organization.
Any change to either the Purpose or the Philosophy will have a significant impact on the organization and its employees.
However any successful organization must give continued focus on constantly adjusting its philosophy to the forces effecting it. Company philosophy is a much misunderstood term but for us it means “general laws that furnish the rationale behind everything”. It stands for the basic beliefs that people in the organization are guided by – informal, unwritten guidelines on how people should act and conduct themselves.
An effective, understood and adhered to philosophy can be a serious force for positive performance in an organization.
A key element of a successful company philosophy then is a sensitivity to external forces affecting the business and the constant need to adjust to counteract or take advantage of those forces. The most successful corporate leaders make constant efforts to keep their company adjusted to the external forces affecting the strategy, objectives, operations, people, projects, products and partnerships. The most successful businesses are acutely aware of changes, particularly subtle changes, in things like technology, competitor activity, regulation etc. and are able to react quickly.
Even without intending it, any company will gradually develop a company philosophy as people observe and learn through trial and error. However, here at Zeitgeist we suggest that an intentional, positive program by an organization’s leadership should exist to build or reshape a robust fundamental philosophy that should be the overriding component of the company’s system of management.
The leadership’s key role in ensuring that such a philosophy takes hold and becomes effective is their continued ability to demonstrate the philosophy in practice otherwise the desired behaviours will never take root in the minds of the employees.
But it’s not just the power of example that is required to deliver the company philosophy. Leaders at all levels should articulate the company philosophy, relate it to actual situations and issues at hand and identify where the actions support or conflict with the beliefs of the organization. It is only through this type of reinforcing behaviour that a company philosophy can be soundly and securely built.

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