Organizational culture and change

Organizational culture has a significant impact on the organization’s success and the ability to renew in the changing operating environment. If the organizational culture does not support the approach required by the strategy, this may slow down or completely halt the progress on the goals.

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Jan Silvonen
Jan Silvonen +358 40 514 7715

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In the long run, the culture is the deciding factor between the success and failure of an organization.


Niilo Mäkelä

Research Director, MPS People Analytics

Practically all organizations need constant change in operations and culture, and agile organizations perform the best in continuous change. Taking organizational culture into account is one of the key elements of success in a controlled and goal-oriented policy shift.

Before anything can be changed at the individual and organizational level, it must be identified. There are various research tools for identifying and defining organizational culture. They measure culture from different perspectives and with different accuracy and, thus, are also suitable for different situations.

Situations in which it is useful for an organization to survey or concretize the current culture and thus venture deeper into the prevailing culture include:

  • changes in strategy and operating environment
  • reorganization, acquisitions or growth
  • reassessment of values
  • renewal of leadership principles

Changing culture is one of the most challenging and significant transformation projects. In many cases, organizations adhere to their cultural values despite the fact that they no longer support the activities required by the strategy and are, therefore, obstacles to growth or development. MPS uses three different research tools to identify and define organizational culture, which are briefly presented below.


OCAI – Organizational Cultural Assessment Instrument

OCAI is a research method developed by Cameron and Quinn and is based on a model of competing values. The method can be used to assess and define the current culture, as well as to identify differences between the current and desired situations and, thus, better steer change in the direction of the target culture. The method helps to understand the type, influence and unity of a culture. The OCAI tool helps leaders develop their leadership style in the light of the prevailing and desired cultures.


MPS Culture Dynamics survey

The survey is based on the model of competing values and organizational compatibility theory. The methodology of the MPS survey has been utilized in the creation of the indicator. The survey is used to assess both the current and ideal culture and the way key employees operate. The survey also measures the conformity of the practices and processes in relation to the culture.

The MPS Culture Dynamics survey identifies the major targets of positive attitude to change and targets of resistance. The operating method required by the strategy and values is described in line with the cultural framework in order to spot the processes and operating methods that disrupt conformity.


Hofstede Multi Focus model

MFM™ is a research model developed by Hofstede Insights, based on Geert Hofstede’s international cultural framework, and validated by scientific research.

The research involves measuring the actual culture and determining the optimal culture required by the strategy. The model takes into account the specifics of the industry and organization in the performance analysis. The MFM model produces concrete proposals for measures to steer the prevailing culture towards the optimal. The model utilizes an extensive reference database based on research data from more than 4,000 organizations.


How to change culture

  • Understand the prevalent type of culture in your organization. Conduct a survey and use one of the tools above, for example.
  • Define the desired culture.
  • Manage core practices for change: clear goal setting, leadership alignment, and organizational planning. 

Does your organization need to identify its culture or change it? Contact us, and we will help you with the process.

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Contact us

Jan Silvonen
Jan Silvonen +358 40 514 7715