One of the main problems organisations face in managing strategic change is effecting changes in organisational culture. We have used our powerful tool – the Cultural Web – to help managers address the challenge of strategy driven cultural change. Our Cultural Web was originated by Gerry Johnson and it is explained in several of his publications. This has been used by us with organizations as diverse as Shell, KPMG, Castrol, the NHS, the UK Labour Party and as part of high profile executive education programmes at Manchester Business School, Cranfield School of Management, Strathclyde Business School and Lancaster University Management School. What follows is an edited version of a chapter that explains its use from Exploring Public Sector strategy, edited by Gerry Johnson and Kevan Scholes (Prentice Hall, 2001)
MAPPING AND RE-MAPPING ORGANISATIONAL CULTURE: A LOCAL GOVERNMENT EXAMPLE ∗.
by Gerry Johnson
Introduction There is a tendency for organisations' strategies to persist because they are configured within that which is taken for granted in the organisation - assumptions about the nature of the organisation, its environment and the way things are done in the organisation. Even when a strategy is formulated, perhaps based on sound rational argument, organisations often find that achieving significant change to current strategy is difficult.
This paper builds on the idea of the cultural web to show how mapping culture can provide an understanding of barriers to change; and how re-mapping on the basis of the culture needed to deliver the strategy can help identify means of managing strategic change. It uses a case example to illustrate this.
The Concept of Culture and the Cultural Web Culture is often explained as that which is taken for granted in a society or organisation. At its most basic this might be assumptions about what the organisation is there to do, or the reasons for its success historically. Culture can also be thought of as the...