The different aspects of corporate culture are values, language, expectations, rituals and stories. Corporate culture can strengthen a business if the different aspects are in alignment with its mission and objectives. Consequently, mergers and acquisitions can be unsuccessful if the different aspects of the two cultures are not in alignment. While sometimes difficult, the corporate culture of an organization can be changed so that the company can implement changes more easily in the future.
Values are instilled into corporate culture by the decision and actions of the organization's leaders. This aspect of corporate culture influences the attitudes, motivation and decisions of employees. The understated values are just as influential as the stated values. These values include time management, cost savings, amount of space, and work performance. For instance, the company may reward employees that arrive on time regularly to put a high value on punctuality, but may also show tolerance by ignoring employees that leave early every day. After a while, the corporate culture will be to arrive on time but that it is okay to leave early.
Type of language used for communication within and outside of the organization influences the corporate culture. This includes whether employees talk formally and use expressions or terminologies that are unique to the organization. Some organizations use very casual language when speaking with management and coworkers, but speak formally when communicating with upper management. Shoptalk can be filled with expressions and terminologies that are not common outside of the organization, which can sometimes seem overwhelming when training new employees.
Expectations for employee behavior are an aspect of corporate culture that can either foster or hinder creativity and acceptance of new employees onto the team. Management should make clear to employees its expectations of how they should behave while at work to avoid confusion and create a positive working environment. It is especially important that new employees be briefed on office etiquette and general rules of the organization.
Rituals are an important aspect of corporate culture that employees follow, such as meetings and submitting reports. Some organizations hold large, routine meetings, while others hold informal one-on-one meetings. Other businesses only hold a meeting whenever a change will be made, regardless of the number of attendants. Some rituals become so habitual that they continue even when no longer necessary.
Stories and myths are shared in many corporate cultures to inspire and motivate employees. They may vary from how the company was founded to the heroes of the organization. These stories are used to convey a message to employees about its values and customs.