To Cultivate a Culture - The Findwise Case
Examensarbete för masterexamen
Learning and leadership (MPLOL), MSc
Culture is a concept visible in many forms and can mean many things. The layman may refer to culture as music, movies or religions while the anthropologist probably will refer to it as some form of a social phenomenon. During the twentieth century, an increasing interest has been directed towards culture in organizations and companies. Since culture is a central thing in people's life, one should have little doubt that culture is a central thing in organization. As Barbara (1992) points out in her book “Exploring Complex Organizations”, we spend around half of our waking hours each work day in some sort of organization. Therefore, one could argue that the culture of one’s organization is one of the most (if not the most) central cultural influencer in one’s life. In the extensive literature describing the framework of culture and how it could be understood the focus is usually on cultural change (e.g. Hofstede & Hofstede, 2005). Less has been done helping companies utilizing this vast existing knowledge to preserve its culture in practice. This research investigates how a company can be helped in their cultural learning efforts. Since culture is a complex phenomenon (at least for the non-anthropologist), it takes some time to understand it as well as develop a methodology to investigate relevant aspects. This report will serve as both an understanding of an organization, as well as a case for how a culture can be cultured in a company. This research investigates a challenge many successful companies probably will face, preserving the culture through an expansion. When expanding both geographically (to more cities and countries) and by size (increasing the number of employees) the values and culture will be challenged. When the small group of 20 twenty people grows to 150 people and spanning over more than one country it takes effort to preserve the same culture initially held by the smaller group. Findwise is a company who is facing a scenario like the one described above. Over the last 10 years the company has grown from around 10 people to over 100 people and has great interest in maintaining the values and mentality through this continuous expansion. The results in this report will show the difference between what culture a company think they have and what they actually have and how this will have to be understood in order to preserve or change. The conclusions are that a company that expands will enforce structures that will affect the culture in various ways. The research is a master thesis conducted by two students of the master programme “Learning and leadership” at Chalmers University of Technology.
Arbetslivsstudier , Kulturstudier , Etnologi , Work Sciences , Cultural Studies , Ethnology