Analyzing Organizational Culture

Discussion: Analyzing Organizational Culture
A companys culture is often buried so deeply inside rituals assumptions attitudes and values that it becomes transparent to an organizations members only when for some reason it changes.
Rob Goffee
Culture is embedded within every organization. Yet because culture is woven throughout the everyday interactions and atmosphere of an organization it can be difficult to assess and explain how the culture influences the inner workings of the organization.
As a nurse leader-manager developing a sound understanding of an organizations culture can help you to achieve quality improvement initiatives and identify strategies for enacting sustainable change.
For this Discussion you analyze the culture of an organization and consider how this relates to achieving goals related to quality improvement. You may wish to focus on the same organization that you have selected for your Course Project.
To prepare:
Review the information on organizational culture in this weeks Learning Resources.
Reflect on the culture of an organization with which you are familiar. Consider the following:
What elements of the organizations culture seem most prominent or significant to you?
What beliefs dispositions and/or actions seem to be most valued? Why do you think so?
What do you notice about the expectations assumptions and more demonstrated among people within the organization?
What artifacts provide clues about the culture?
How do these cultural elements contribute to or detract from the organizations ability to meet prominent goals and objectives?
Consider how you as a nurse leader-manager could apply your knowledge of this culture to facilitate quality improvement initiatives within this organization. How would you leverage the strengths of the culture and address limitations or obstacles that may arise within it?
Post an analysis of the culture of the organization that you selected. Explain how you think this particular culture contributes to or detracts from the organizations ability to meet goals. Explain how you as a nurse leader-manager could utilize your knowledge of this culture to facilitate quality improvement initiatives within this organization.
Read a selection of your colleagues responses.
Respond to at least two of your colleagues on two different days using one or more of the following approaches:
Analyze similarities and differences between your colleagues organizational culture and the organization that you selected.
Ask a probing question substantiated with additional background information or research.
Share an insight from having read your colleagues postings synthesizing the information to provide new perspectives.
Suggest leadership strategies that your colleague could use to overcome obstacles in the organizations culture to facilitate quality improvement initiatives.
Required Readings
Hickey J. V. & Brosnan C. A. (2017). Evaluation of health care quality in for DNPs (2nd ed.). New York NY: Springer Publishing Company.
Chapter 10 Evaluation of Patient Care Standards Guidelines and Protocols (pp. 207-226)
Chapter 12 Evaluating Populations and Population Health (pp. 265-280)
Chapter 10 reviews methods for using national local and organizational standards to evaluate the quality of health care practices. Chapter 12 examines strategies for identifying quality issues through the evaluation of populations.
Sadeghi S. Barzi A. Mikhail O. & Shabot M. M. (2013). Integrating quality and strategy in health care organizations Burlington MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.
Chapter 3 General Concepts in Quality (pp. 4582)
See the six aims for quality proposed by the Institute of Medicine (IOM).
Bellot J. (2011). Defining and assessing organizational culture. Nursing Forum 46(1) 2937.
Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
Bellot reviews the definition of organizational culture methods for evaluating organizational culture and the application of Scheins framework to defining the culture of health care organizations.
Dixon M. A. & Dougherty D. S. (2010). Managing the multiple meanings of organizational culture in interdisciplinary collaboration and consulting. Journal of Business Communication 47(1) 319.
Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
This article demonstrates the importance of not only understanding the culture of an organization but also how these dynamics affect workplace performance and retention of employees.
Dorgham S. R. (2012). Relationship between organization work climate & staff nurses organizational commitment. Nature and Science 10(5) 8091. Retrieved from
The correlation between organizational climate and commitment and its effect on an organization is evaluated in this study.
Hartnell C. A. Ou A. Y. & Kinicki A. (2011). Organizational culture and organizational effectiveness: A meta-analytic investigation of the competing values framework’s theoretical suppositions. Journal of Applied Psychology 96(4) 677694.
Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
This article presents a study on the relationship between culture types and organizational effectiveness. The authors apply specific values frameworks to determine the relationships while also assessing the competing values framework.
Schein E. H. (1996). Three cultures of management: The key to organizational learning. Sloan Management Review 38(1) 920.
Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
In this seminal article Schein identifies three subcultures found within an organization and the effects of these competing cultures on an organizations effectiveness.
Wait S. T. & Dayman M. A. (2012 July/August). Company culture drives business value. Value Examiner 3031.
Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.
The authors connect company culture to innovation and success.
Institute of Medicine. (2001). Crossing the quality chasm: A new health system for the 21st century. Retrieved from
This report briefly outlines the six aims of the IOM to improve the quality of health care.
Schein E. H. (1997). Organizational culture & leadership. Retrieved from
Edgar Schein is one of the early writers on organizational culture. In this foundational article Schein outlines various dimensions of organizational culture and how leaders create transmit and embed organizational culture.
Required Media
Laureate Education (Producer). (2013e). Organizational culture. Retrieved from
Note: The approximate length of this media piece is 3 minutes.
Dr. Carol Huston discusses the influence of organizational culture on the delivery of quality care
Accessible player

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