Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Organization Theory - 21

Continuing our discussion from the last blog, we today look at the training and rituals as a means to achieve formalization. 

Training: Almost every organization offers trainings to its employees. These could be on-the-job like coaching, apprenticeship etc or off-the-job like class room lectures, films etc. In addition to this are the orientation programs. All these aim to instill in employees work behaviors and attitudes that are required by the organization in addition to the job related technology skills.

Let’s understand this with the help of the very famous training program of Infosys. One could read more about it here.

The training that Infosys provided doesn’t just look at the technology challenge but here is a specific program - Infosys Leadership System (ILS) which addresses the issue of sustained growth in general and creates a formal and committed system for developing leadership capabilities in Infoscions. The emphasis in the program is on developing a "partnership approach" in its top management!

Rituals: These are generally repetitive acts which are followed by a larger section of the organization. A well known example is that of Wal-Mart!

Wal-Mart was founded by Sam Walton. He initiated a very famous ritual for the Wal-Mart employees - "the company chant". It served as a means to motivate and unite the workforce. - the Wal-mart chant is: "Gimme a W, gimme and A gimme and L, gimme a squiggle, give me an M, A, R, T!" Similarly other companies like IBM, Ericsson, Novell, Deutsche Bank, and Pricewaterhouse coopers. all have their own company chants. 

Rituals like the ones above attempt to highlight the key values of the organization like - what goals are most important which people are important, and which people are expendable.

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