Using data from participants at a single organization, we employed a three-perspective metatheory to move toward a more comprehensive description of organizational culture and examined how differing theoretical perspectives yield convergent, complementary, or contrary findings. Survey data (n = 124) combined with the results from 19 structured interviews indicated that employees shared consensus around some cultural values, but also suggested the existence of subcultures and general ambiguity around other cultural elements. That is, from an integrative perspective, there was clarity surrounding one set of values; from a differentiation perspective, subcultures existed; and from a fragmentation perspective, there was evidence of ambiguity and conflict regarding the meaning of some cultural manifestations. This study contributes to the literature on organizational culture enacting calls to conceptualize and examine culture from multiple perspectives and discussing the consequences. Furthermore, the study highlights the importance of employing multiple methods in diagnosing organizational culture.
Taylor, Vicki Fairbanks and Goates, Nathan
"Rope or Elephant’s Tail: Different Frames of Culture,"
Organization Management Journal: Vol. 14:
2, Article 2.
Available at: https://scholarship.shu.edu/omj/vol14/iss2/2