Although few organizations are completely homogenous, any
failure to integrate cultures within your organization will be reflected in
productivity. Even if your employees share a similar ethnic
background, differences in economic status, intelligence, political
beliefs and religious values can divert workers time and energy from
production to conflict.
Integrating people from different backgrounds and cultures requires
attention to cultural similarities and differences. While ethnic values and
traditional holidays can be honored and used as resources, conflicts can
damage organizational relationships between management, employees, customers,
suppliers and stockholders.
We help managers analyze their organizations to find and
control potential sources of conflict. The sources are rarely as obvious as
the later manifestations of conflict, such as fights, disputes, harassment
and lawsuits. You can predict potential conflict,
and dissolve conflict before it manifests as increased tension and
Some Categories of Workplace Culture
clothes, jewelry, homes, decor
languages, work hours, productivity, strategies
definitions, predictions, assessments, rules, histories
evaluations, comparisons, policies, ethics
personalities, identifications, transferences
social behaviors, community rituals, cultural traditions
Ineffective cultural integration is
expensive: you lose productivity and sales, you lose key personnel, and customers
and you may lose respect as a manager. Employees may manifest their hidden agendas by
ignoring your proposed changes, or by sabotaging your efforts at integration.
Systemic coaching can solve challenging mergers.
Our more recent challenges include
integrating military and civilian emergency personnel, integrating
commercial and therapeutic consultants and integrating refugees into host
cultures. We also ease the transition of commercial mergers.
If you are preoccupied with the financial, legal
and technical aspects of management, you may ignore the relationship dynamics of merging cultures. The
fact that few mergers meet
management's expectations reflects this failure to anticipate conflict and integrate different cultures.
Buying a company is simpler than integrating a workforce. Systemic management prevents wasted time and
effort on ineffective changes, and accelerates organizational integration.
Some factors affecting cultural integration:
Vision and values
Communication styles and flexibility
Information dissemination and flow
Management unity and coordination
Availability of perquisites and promotion
Flexibility of behaviors, habits and traditions
Any failure to manage
integration may cause disappointing performance. Let the results of other
mergers and acquisitions motivate you to give due
diligence to systemic management.
Managing the culture of your organization, and successfully merging
different cultures helps avoid losing market position, key employees and
Let our consultants,
tools and processes increase the likelihood of
successful integration of your organization.
Assessing, creating and managing corporate culture
are sciences and arts.
- Assessing corporate culture
- Qualitative - interviews and focus groups
- Quantitative - questionnaires and polls
- Culture, performance and profitability
- Managing cultural conflict
- Integrating new employees
How to accelerate and improve cultural
- Why managing culture is as important as managing finance,
law and technology
- How to assess the challenge
- Pre-acquisition cultural assessment
- Dominance - which culture to keep?
- Managing the pre-merger, merger and post-merger
- Merging identities, visions and goals
Workshops can be presented as in-house
trainings, or delivered as part of on-site programs
. Integrating Refugees .
Martyn Carruthers is the founder of Soulwork Systemic Coaching and Systemic
He provides worldwide training and
consulting on organizational relationships.