A story's impact on organizational‐culture change

A story's impact on organizational‐culture change Purpose – The purpose of the paper is to explain the successful implementation of organizational applications, and ensuing organizational change, based on a story from a GM manufacturing plant. Design/methodology/approach – The approach involved collecting and analyzing the Hoist Story as part of a multi‐year ethnographic research project designed to identify the key attributes in an ideal plant culture. Through a cooperative process of co‐production, the authors worked in tandem with organizational members on issues related to organizational‐culture change. Findings – The findings emphasize both the Hoist Story's process impact and outcome impact. The Hoist Story was a catalyst for the change process, resulting in a high level of buy‐in across the organization; as such it contrasts with much of the management literature on “planned change.” It also led to the development of several “packaged products” (e.g. a story script, video, collaboration tools) which propelled GM manufacturing culture closer to its ideal – a culture of collaboration. Using employee stories as a means to understand and drive culture change is a largely underdeveloped area of scholarship. Originality/value – This paper provides value by bridging the gap between theory and praxis. It includes the documentation and cultural analysis of the story, but illustrates how the story evolved into specific organizational‐culture‐change applications. This “soup‐to‐nuts” approach can serve as a model for organizational researchers and change agents interested in spearheading or supporting organizational‐culture change. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Organizational Change Management Emerald Publishing

A story's impact on organizational‐culture change

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2012 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0953-4814
D.O.I.
10.1108/09534811211199600
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of the paper is to explain the successful implementation of organizational applications, and ensuing organizational change, based on a story from a GM manufacturing plant. Design/methodology/approach – The approach involved collecting and analyzing the Hoist Story as part of a multi‐year ethnographic research project designed to identify the key attributes in an ideal plant culture. Through a cooperative process of co‐production, the authors worked in tandem with organizational members on issues related to organizational‐culture change. Findings – The findings emphasize both the Hoist Story's process impact and outcome impact. The Hoist Story was a catalyst for the change process, resulting in a high level of buy‐in across the organization; as such it contrasts with much of the management literature on “planned change.” It also led to the development of several “packaged products” (e.g. a story script, video, collaboration tools) which propelled GM manufacturing culture closer to its ideal – a culture of collaboration. Using employee stories as a means to understand and drive culture change is a largely underdeveloped area of scholarship. Originality/value – This paper provides value by bridging the gap between theory and praxis. It includes the documentation and cultural analysis of the story, but illustrates how the story evolved into specific organizational‐culture‐change applications. This “soup‐to‐nuts” approach can serve as a model for organizational researchers and change agents interested in spearheading or supporting organizational‐culture change.

Journal

Journal of Organizational Change ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Feb 10, 2012

Keywords: Organizational culture; Organizational‐culture change; Cultural applications; Collaboration; Organizational stories; Ethnography; Manufacturing industries

References

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