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Analysis of Organisational Culture Assignment In VUCA Environments


Task: Discuss the importance of nurturing a healthy work culture at an organization and analyze theories and techniques to manage culture inn VUCA environments


Culture is like an umbrella which incorporates the social norms and behavior found in the human society in addition to the beliefs, habits, laws, customs, knowledge, arts and capabilities of individuals in such groups (Mironenko and Sorokin, 2018). The culture is an important building block for both nations and organizations for maintaining peace and integration. In the relevance of nations, culture has broader meaning which encompasses beliefs, customs and all other factors of the entire population while in the relevance of organizations, culture is the underlying assumptions, values, beliefs and the methods of communicating which contribute to inimitable psychological and social environment of organization. As per the Elsmore, (2017), the organizational culture assignment represents certain policies that are predefined and provides guidance to the workforce and also sense of the direction at workplace. It also enables the individuals to have clear information about their responsibilities and roles and an organization along with the ways by which one can achieve the task before deadlines. For gaining the benefit from the policies that are part of organizational culture assignment it important to communicate it effectively the employees mainly in the VUCA environment. The VUCA is an acronym of the volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity which can be said as a blend of the qualities which together portray nature of certain difficult situations and conditions (Codreanu, 2016). The uncertainty is an element of that condition in which outcomes and events are unpredictable. The rapid changes in the economic, technological, political and social fronts are causing the VUCA increasingly in the organizations. As per the Northouse (2018), leadership is a way by which the organizations can manage and lead their culture in context of VUCA environment. The leadership can be said as the practical skills regarding ability of a person to lead or provide guidance to the other people, teams or the entire organization. The aim of this organizational culture assignment is to discuss and analyze theories and techniques in leading and managing culture in the VUCA environments.

In the present time, the globalization has caused many impacts and challenges for the business organization in many ways such as change in the trade policies, increasing diversity and others which are also known as the attributes and characteristics of the changing environment. As per the Du and Chen, (2018), such attributes and characteristics are symbolized by VUCA that is volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity and represents the ways the organization feels for designing the strategy and conducting business in world. The concept of VUCA was given by U.S. Army War College for describing the more volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous polygonal world after the completion of cold war (Alkhaldi, et al., 2017). This term mainly used by the deliberate business leaders for describing the rapid, chaotic and turbulent changes in the business environment which is considered as new normal. Presently, VUCA is said as the only environmental factor that apparatuses entities in the indeterminate times which induces in utilization of the leader’s capacity to take actions in the uncertain situations. The explanation of the four VUCA dimensions are as follows:

  1. Volatility: The quick, intense and dynamic changes in environment where challenges are unstable or unexpected and might be of the unknown duration.
  2. Uncertainty: Lack of probability around the events and issues where nature of events might be known but the predictability of their outcome or presence is impossible in the advance.
  3. Complexity: The amalgamation of chaos and issues which surrounds a company, in which situation has various interconnected variables and parts where certain information might be predicted or available but its nature or volume can be overwhelming to progression (Block, 2019).
  4. Ambiguity: The obscurity of the reality and mixed meaning about the scenario in which the unpremeditated relationships are entirely unclear where precedents not exist and has to face the unknown.

In the present business environment, the managers and organizations are struggling for staying aligned and afloat in the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous. The rapid changes in the business environment makes the organizations to investigate a way by which they can manage changes in the VUCA environment. As per the Meuser et al., (2016), the rapid changes in the business environment impact on every function and operation in the organization because of the company require appropriate traits of leadership for managing and leading change such as problem understanding, general intelligence and constructs of problem solving which create inimitable contribution to the creative performance in problem solving. In this scenario, the world needs effective leaders with the effective skills like ready adaptability, decision making and high confidence. The one more important factor to make a nation or organization to afloat in the VUCA environment is through its culture as it helps in managing workforce which is volatile in such environment therefore the management of culture is important for surviving in the VUCA environment (Elkington, et al., 2017). The leadership skills or the type of leadership used by leaders majorly depends on organization and the challenges it is facing in the environment.

The traditional responsibilities and roles of leader is to identify opportunities, anticipate the change, direct and motivate people, solve problems, develop strategic plans, take effective decisions and solve problems. With the VUCA environment, it is difficult for the leaders to perform their role therefore they require certain changes in their leadership style or change their focus so that they can manage and lead the organization and its culture in the rapidly changing environment (Dong, et al., 2017). In terms of the changes the business organization can also face challenges in terms of ethics, values and beliefs while managing their culture. In the past time, the business organization use tools such as code of conduct, policies and practices for managing ethical issues but with the VUCA there is change in the ways the organizations perform their activities, operations and others which impact on their work culture. The workforce can feel pressure, the changes are difficult to adapt for them or they might not feel comfortable in the new environment. The major complexities arise when the organization change or make the organizational culture assignment flexible as per the environment such as unintentional disrespect due to the behaviour of diverse workforce, lack of understanding about their beliefs on sexual orientation and others (Hoch, et al., 2018). Apple has faced such challenges mainly with the suppliers. The component of its product manufacture in the countries with low labour cost in which the probability of misconduct is high because of the variation in the standards of labour and lack of direct insight. The company has faced the challenge of being unethical due to this reason although now it has designed and provided the supplier code of conduct along with conducting audit in the different factories. After accepting the VUCA as a normal business environment, the companies are using diverse workforce which is a major challenge for the existing workforce along with the company as it requires to develop set of policies which are beneficial for everyone. The developing such culture is a challenge as it requires understanding of the culture of various work force for avoiding the intentional issues. The example of doing such efforts by the organizations is the purchase of Zappos by Amazon for understanding the organizational culture assignment of the company.

The organizational culture assignment involves a dovetailing set of the goals, processes, roles, values, attitudes, assumptions and communication practices. These elements together act as jointly reinforcing system and syndicate for preventing any effort to alter it but the VUCA environment the change in culture is an impact of the dynamic environmental, technological and other changes. As per the Wursten (2018), value of the integrity, empowerment, trust, leader and employee development and learning is necessary in new normal of VUCA. The incorporation of cultural change cascades through the entire organization which id later used for providing guidance in the personal development and hiring decisions along with ensuring that alignment ad synchronization of the organizational system to embody culture. In this scenario, the organizations require leader who believe in the importance of change in organizational culture assignment for the growth as the corporate culture entails both attention to efficiency of the business and production and the relationship between the people in an organization regardless of its size. The change in culture can also cause cooperation issues among the groups and individuals therefore suitable leadership style is important for managing and leading change for reducing the complexities caused by it.

The trait theory of leadership says the leadership skills are inherent in an individual and cannot be fostered in someone it also provides a set quality that is required to become leader whether it is of a nation or an organization. The trait that are described in the trait theory are knowledge about the business, initiative, tenacity, energy, goof decision making, flexibility, creativity, emotional intelligence, motivation, confidence and integrity. In the VUCA environment a leader requires such skills form managing and leading cultural change. The major drawback of this theory is that it does not reflect on any style of leadership which an individual can implement in such environment (Lynch, 2015). The trait theory only describes the skills that are required for leadership while other theories also provide information about the various kind of leaders among which situational leadership is one. The situational leadership refers to such leaders who adopt various style of leadership as per the scenario and requirement of development of their team. In this style of leadership, the leader identifies the need of team and set the balance which is beneficial for both organization and its employees. in incorporation of this style of leadership in the managing and leading culture can reduce the issues cause by changes because of the ability of leaders to create balance among the requirement of organization and its workforce. With the use of four stages of the situational leadership, the leaders can manage and lead the culture by directing, coaching, supporting and delegating. The example of using situational leadership in the managing and leading culture is Steve Jobs who was the co-founder of Apple and lead the organization through various environmental, technological and cultural changes. The main characteristics of his leadership was solution oriented and confident because of which the makes the people understand the requirement of changes and its necessity. The VUCA environment also cause failure to the Steve Jobs and impact the work environment of Apple such as increasing work pressure on employees. in such scenario he considered resilience as a key for managing culture in such environment and adapt the outcome of changes. It can also be said that the flexibility of changing leadership style is the reason because of which Steve Jobs able to manage and lead the culture of Apple in VUCA environment.

The transactional leadership is also a part of the various leadership theories which depends on the self-motivated individuals who are able to work in the directed and structured environment. Such type of leaders values the structure and order. The organizational culture assignment provides such order and structure to the leaders so that they can manage the workplace and changes in the culture can not be easily dealt by such leaders as the changes in culture can impact on the structure and values of the organization (Dartey-Baah, 2015). The culture is the element which provide understanding of the vision, objectives, principles, policies and values of the organization and VUCA environment makes the organization to be flexible about their culture such as in the past time, the cultural diversity was not acceptable in various organization but now every organization is using diverse workforce. The leaders with this leadership style do not change their ideas, values and philosophies with the changes around them even in the VUA environment. Bill Gates is the example of transactional leader who is the co-founder of Microsoft. The culture is fostered by Bill Gates and reflects his values and beliefs. Like other organizations, VUCA environment also influence the Microsoft but it did not change the ideologies and leadership style of Bill Gates. Microsoft already has flexible organizational culture assignment as the company does not have one size fit for all policy because of which every office of the company is designed on the basis of the local culture and employees of the company (Yoffie and Cusumano, 2015). It shows that however Bill Gates can not change his leadership style in the changing world but his vision provides the flexibility to the Microsoft to manage culture in the VUCA environment.

The transformational leadership is also a theory of leadership in which the leaders work with the team for identifying the requirement of changes, creating vision for guiding the change by inspiration and also executing change in the tandem with committed individuals of group. The leaders with the transformational leadership style focus on transforming others so that they can support each other and also to the organization (Dong, et al., 2017). The followers of transformational leader retort by feeling admiration, trust, respect and loyalty for their leader and are willing to work with more efforts than expected. For managing the organizational culture assignment, the transformational leadership is an effective way as transformational leader can influence its followers the needs of changes in culture and motivate them in every step of its adaptation as they have the ability to transform their followers at the emotional and personal levels. Jeff Bezos is the major example of transformational leaders who is the founder of Amazon and is known for his creativity and leadership skills. The establishment of Amazon which is an e-retailer organization from a book store illustrate the vision and ability of him in the changing world. He is among those leaders who understand the importance of the organizational culture assignment. As per the e Cunha et al., (2017), Jeff Bezos hugely focus on the organizational culture assignment as he thinks that in the changing scenario, the culture is the only factor which pays off. In amazon, the culture is keystone of company and development of workforce. He focuses on developing a culture which grows and innovates with the intention as it enable the organization to gain the loyalty of employees. the culture of the company is growth oriented which is important to lead in a VUCA environment. As the VUCA environment impact the organization in various ways such as price rise and others, the loyalty of the employees is the base upon which a leader can manage organizational culture assignment along with providing growth to the company.

The soft vs hard management is also a method by which organizations can lead and manage change. The organizations that uses hard management treat their employees as a resource and only focus on the need of organization in terms of work force. The autocratic leadership style is used in such organizations. The example of the organization that uses hard management is Amazon. The organization that uses soft management treat their employees as a source of competitive advantage and focuses on their need. They carefully plan the needs of employees and use democratic style leadership. Microsoft uses soft management because of which the company has designed their every office as per the culture of the workforce of that place. The use of soft management enables the organization to lead and manage culture while in hard management, the organization might lose its human resources.

Beside of the traditional leadership style, the leaders in the VUCA environment also require additional set of skills or abilities which enable them to leader or manage culture in the VUCA environment. The shared vision an be an ability which the leaders can use for managing culture. The leaders are responsible for interacting with the people and enable them to motivate for adapting the change in culture in the context of both organization or a nation. It is the requirement of changing environment that every individual support the vision and also understand their role in it (Elkington, et al., 2017). It provides them the clarification of the purpose and enable them to counter the turbulence in market with the endure the volatile changes through responding speedily with the actions and decisions which are true to vison. In other words, the shared vision enables the leaders to make workforce participate in managing culture for the same purpose which is the sustainability and growth of the company. The collaboration is also a way which the leaders can use for managing culture by harnessing the skills, multiple perception of the workforce, knowledge and experience of the staff, if they want to energise and inspire others and for achieving the goal of the organization (Codreanu, 2016). the leaders are also required to listen to the people who are round them and for building on their thoughts. The leaders are also required to support and promote the internal networks, interdependency and interconnection rather than strengthening hierarchical parts of the functional expertise. It is a way by which a leader can understand the perception of workforce in managing and leading culture and provide them the solution of the problems they are facing in the changing environment. The ne more ability which the leader can use as an addition to they method of leadership is the fostering a supple culture. The leaders in the VUCA environment are required to be keen for assessing their organizational culture assignment, for better understanding of the reason of changes in the organization and its environment. Ideally, it is important that the culture must be respectful, less about judging the individuals, more about encourage them so that they become curious, open to the new ways and opportunities for the improvement and supportive (Chawla and Lenka, 2018). The appropriate culture enables the leader to reward and promote the needed behaviour and it also help them for retaining and attracting the talented workforce. The leaders in the environment regardless of their traditional leadership style can also foster certain additional skills so that they can manage and lead the culture which is important for the growth of the organization and also for the nation as well.

The culture can be said as a framework of the ideas, beliefs, values, ethics, customs, laws, norms and perception which define the social behaviour of individual or group of individual. after the introduction of VUCA, the rapid changes in the environment due to external forces such as political, legal, technological and others are become acceptable and evitable for everyone. It raises the requirement of fostering culture, managing it and leading it for reducing the impact of challenges caused by VUCA environment on the people whether of in organization or in nation. The leaders are responsible for managing ad leading culture so that they can use their abilities for making people understand the need of managing culture. the various leadership methods can be implemented for managing and leading culture as they have their own strength and weakness. The situational leadership provide the flexibility to change as per the environment, the transactional leadership provide values and structure on the basis of the culture and transformational leadership can make leaders to transform people at the personal and emotional levels, the leaders can use such methods on the basis of their ability but beside of this there are also certain abilities which can help them in managing culture in the VUCA environment that are shared vision, collaboration and fostering a supple culture. The conclusion that can be obtained from this organizational culture assignment is the leadership is an important factor for making organizations afloat in the VUCA environment with their culture.

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