Using assigned readings from Bolman & Deal and the case study, write a 800-1000 word analysis of Iggy’s Bread of the World from the perspective of the Symbolic frame. In conducting an organizational field-based analysis, you may find the following questions helpful to guide your observations and investigation.
- What does architecture say about the culture? What is on the walls? How does the building make you feel? How is space arranged? How is the parking lot organized?
- What kind of cars do people drive? How do people look and act when they arrive? How do they look and act when they leave?
- What is the organization’s history?
- What are the organization’s core values? How are they displayed? Do they seem to make sense? How widely known and shared are the values? Do they have meaning for people? Do they appear to arouse sentiment? How have they changed over time?
- Is there a visionary hero or heroine at the helm? In the recent or distant past? What is he or she like? Does he or she represent and embody the core values? Inspire emotion in people? Is his or her picture displayed on the wall? Is he or she portrayed in well-known stories?
- Who are the other heroes and heroines? Do people know who they are? Are they of a particular type? Are they anointed and celebrated formally? Across the heroes and heroines, can you see patterns consistent with stated values?
- What seems to be the most potent symbols? What do these seem to represent?
- What do social rituals of greeting and exit say about the culture? How deep are work rituals? How does symbolic activity mesh with core values? Are ritual and values consistent with one another? What are the key management rituals (the meetings, planning, memos)? What goes on in hazing rituals as new members are brought into the culture? Are rituals convened around important transitions? What do rituals symbolize? How stylized is the behavior in rituals? How different is it from everyday behavior?
- How does the organization’s implicit purpose compare with its explicit purpose?
- How often are ceremonies held? Who attends? What is the sequence of events? What role do heroes and heroines play? What symbols are recognized or exchanged? What costumes to people wear? How do they compare with regular work costumes? What do people eat at the ceremonies? What do they drink? What emotions does the ceremony evoke?
- What stories are told? Are they told across the culture? Who are the storytellers? What status are they accorded? What are the stories about? How do stories related to company values?
- How well known and active is the informal network? Who is the CEO? Who are the “gossips”? The “spies”? What events make the actors in the informal network visible?
- How cohesive are subcultures within the organization? What do subcultures form around (function, length of tenure, gender, race)? How do subcultures relate? Do people find more meaning in subcultures than in the larger culture? Can you see a core set of values across the subcultures? What happens when the members of different subcultures attend the same meeting or ritual? Do they bond or blast each other?
- What metaphor of culture type - tough guy, bet-your-company, work hard/play/hard, or process - seems to capture the essence of the culture?
Attached is the case study with assigned reading from Bolman and Deal, Reframing organiations 5th Edition. Page 243-270.
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