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Culture: An Injection For The Organisation’s Health

By Poonam Patel, HR Manager, Marval

 

It is one of the most critical systems in every organization. It helps us keep healthy by preventing damaging (or even toxic) elements to penetrate our organization and cause trouble. It recognises and isolates intruders, safeguards our internal environment and promotes stability across our organization. It’s our immune system, of course, and we all realise the importance of it!

In an enterprise, culture works exactly as the immune system. Culture is a web, a circle that integrates all the little things (reputation, beliefs, values, ethos, legacy, traditions, mission) that make an organization solid, sturdy and unique; and its actions understandable and justifiable. This comprehensive sum of characteristics (which define the organization’s “personality”) helps us identify and isolate potential “intruders” who could put our environment’s good health at risk and compromise our stable, well-functioning operations.

In reality, many organizations struggle to see the importance of effectively instilling and regularly reinforcing their culture. Therefore, culture is often a vague, shapeless and amorphous cloud which people cannot always identify, reflect or associate with - it just happens to be there. Employees may not be able to describe it in detail (although they would probably list some of its features) or realise its importance. Consequently, they are not able to share this culture outside the organization, with their families, business associates or customers.

But a strong culture is the organization’s immune system which, not only helps protect the company from wrong doing (and wrong fits, when it comes to recruitment), but also facilitates reaching a number of strategic management goals, including:

-          Easy and successful integration of new hires

-          Reinvigorated employee enthusiasm and loyalty

-          Alignment in messages, whether in internal or in external communication

-          More effective people management by mid and low level managers and supervisors

All these crucial objectives need to be supported by a strong culture, which will be shared continuously and repeatedly, both in and out of the organization. Enterprises need to remember that:

-          Culture is not the unification of people under the same repeated pattern; it’s the integration of different people (bearing different backgrounds, experiences and social styles) under an inclusive policy that respects or even uses diversity.

-          Culture is not just a formal, but also an informal process. It lies with the employees’ aptitude, the senior management’s communication and the customers’ perceptions about the organization. We need to listen carefully to get a clear picture of how our culture is perceived and translated by different target groups; and address any issues.

-          Culture is (or should be) a crucial part of the organization’s strategy and be aligned with strategic business goals for sustainability and growth. Reports have shown that there is a strong correlation between culture and sustainability in the enterprise.

-          Culture can be assisted by technology. Great technology (like Marval MSM, which supports cultural change) helps emphasise, strengthen, embrace and spread the corporate culture in teams and across the organization.

A solid and well-embraced culture is the indicator of a strong and healthy business, which the employees will be genuinely proud of. By defining, supporting and enhancing their corporate culture, organizations actually strengthen their “immune system” and amalgamate their operations and go-to-market strategy with distilled energy and maximised chance of long-term success.

 

 

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