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Diagnosing the organisational culture of an Australian engineering consultancy using the competing values framework

Igo, Tony & Skitmore, Martin (2006) Diagnosing the organisational culture of an Australian engineering consultancy using the competing values framework. Construction Innovation, 6(2), pp. 121-139.

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Abstract

To operate successfully, a commercial organisation must satisfy the ever-changing demands of its clients, its owners, its employees and society as a whole. To do this, it must have a good understanding of its persona as perceived by its own members and the entities it deals with. This persona, or image an organisation presents of itself, and the way in which it is perceived by its external environment and its internal members, is commonly referred to as its Corporate Culture (Deal and Kennedy, 1982; Silverzweig and Allen, 1976). The tangible aspects include corporate logos, uniforms and clothing, office layout, use of "in-vogue" technology and business processes, while behavioural indicators can include relative importance of social issues and norms such as time keeping, and adherence to prescribed procedures.

This paper describes research within a single, large, Australian Engineering, Procurement and Construction management consultancy aimed at identifying the form of its current corporate culture and the extent to which this is perceived to be appropriate by those involved. Using Quinn and Rohrbaugh (1983) Competing Values Framework, the overall cultural profile of the organisation and dominant characteristic traits is determined through an in-house electronic survey employing the Organisational Cultural Assessment Instrument. This indicated that, the company has a dominant market-oriented culture. In contrast, the most desired form was found to be the employee focused culture – indicating a misalignment between what employees thought was needed and what was perceived to exist. This finding is considered in the light of recent reports identifying the detrimental effect of market-oriented cultures, and the supporting role of employee focused cultures, in achieving construction project quality outcomes.

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ID Code: 4227
Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Competing Values Framework, Corporate Culture, Cultural Profile, Organisational Culture
DOI: 10.1108/14714170610710659
ISSN: 1471-4175
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > BUILDING (120200) > Quantity Surveying (120203)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > ECONOMICS (140000) > Economic Theory (140100) > Economic Theory not elsewhere classified (140199)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BUILT ENVIRONMENT AND DESIGN (120000) > BUILDING (120200) > Building Construction Management and Project Planning (120201)
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2006 Emerald
Copyright Statement: Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Deposited On: 19 May 2006
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 23:22

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