GNcareers, from Gulf News

The pros of an organic company culture

Organic company cultureImage Credit: Supplied

What do you think of organic company culture? It challenges the procedure-bound, control-infested setup and demonstrates a counter-culture that can take root to deliver good results. This culture emphasizes flexibility, consultation, change and innovation. This tends to arise when a good deal of the work in an organization is of a development nature.

Businesses must be able to adopt the organic organizational culture, which is definitely a contrast to the mechanistic culture. In an organic organization, hierarchy of authority, departmental boundaries, rules and regulations, and others become glaring.

I remember a leading computer maintenance company whose policies were proof of an organic culture. It has an open appraisal system in which the reporting manager shares the appraisals of his subordinates with the subordinates themselves. They do not treat it as a confidential process, and there are no rigid job specifications.

Roles are broadly defined. Most of the staff possesses multiple skills. Employees are expected to take initiative to fill the competency gaps. Policies and guidelines were created to respond to their day-to-day needs. Audit did not consider policies as a rule book.

No cabins were provided to staff. Office stations were not based on grades. There was an open-door policy. Employees were allowed to write directly to the CEO about any personal problems or suggestions. All the staff used the common canteen and toilets including the senior management. Know-how, ability, achievements and potential were the main criteria for promotion. Appointments were not determined by vacancies but by the inherent capability and potential of the person.

Being a manager was seen as a role not as a step in the career ladder. Authority and power stemmed more from a person’s competence and expertise rather than from his position in the organization.

Handy Hints
• An organic organization treats all as equals regardless of roles
• Employees are shown to have more initiative, more productive
• Teamwork is a strong point as employee needs are being met

Source: Dr. Pon Mohaideen Pitchai, Special to Jobs & Careers
The writer is a Dubai-based HR and Management Consultant