Organisational culture is defined as the ways in which things are accomplished, a pattern of shared basic assumptions that the group learned as it solved its problems of external adaptation and internal integration, that has worked well enough to be considered valid and, therefore, to be taught to new members as the correct way to perceive, think, and feel in relation to those problems (Schein 1992:12). In comparison to earlier times, organisational culture is more in demand and recognised at present (Schein, 1992) due to competition, increased globalisation, diversified workforce and formation of business coalitions.
This in turn led to product and strategy innovation; integration among firm’s or industrial units to improve efficiency, quality, speed in manufacturing and distribution of services; introduction of new technologies; international transactions; facilitation of teamwork; and management of the diverse human resource (Collins and Porras, 1994). Sharing of thoughts and experiences with others implies that organisational culture promotes a certain level of stability among the members of the firm’s or industry.
Econet Wireless organisational culture basically encompasses the values, beliefs and ideas on what the firm’s or industry is all about, how its workforce should behave and how it defines itself in relation to its external environment. It is this firm’s reality that shapes its activities. The organisational culture is reflected in firm’s philosophies, rules, norms, values, climate, symbols, heroes, and almost everything its member do. ‘Culture is one of the most precious things a company has, so corporate culture strength refers to how widely and deeply employees hold the company’s dominant values and assumptions.
Thus Econet’s employees across all submit, hold the dominant values that is, pioneering, professionalism and personal. These values are also institutionalized through well-established artifacts, thereby making it difficult for those values to change. Furthermore, this culture is long-lasting; as it can be traced back to Strive Masiyiwa company founder’s values and assumptions Culture is formed by screening and selecting new employees who share the same values as your organization. However, culture evolves, it is not static.
Both internal (hiring, staff turnover, etc) and external (technology, competition, etc. ) factors shape Econet wireless culture. Beliefs, vision, objectives and business are compatible with culture. If this is the case, Econet wireless organizational culture becomes a valuable ally in strategy implementation. Organizational culture of Econet wireless has been linked to economic performance and organization viability/success for example, Econet business strategy for the 2010-211 where to: i. Upgrade network infrastructure to offer total world class converged communication solutions ii.
Expand network to grow subscriber base to five million over the next eighteen months iii. Consolidate the number one market leadership Thus through its dedicated to continuous improvement, with visionary leaders who ‘walk their talk’ and focus on a set of core values, these strategies were easy to implement since the organizational culture support and evolves around the whole organization as supported by its healthy financially shown by its 2010-2011 annual financial report in which it marginalized $140. million annual profit which shows successful strategy implementation of expanding network to grow subscriber base to five million over the next eighteen months Its Organizational culture has also been shown to be important for successful new product/process innovation and organizational change that is the launch of 3G and broadband and services and evolving of new generation shops showing a milestone achievement in its strategy implementation of upgrading network infrastructure to offer total world class converged communication solutions Organizational culture of Econet wireless is ‘supported’ by both social/psychological aspects (e. . , stories, symbols, rituals) of the core founder and by some more concrete elements such as power structures, hierarchical structure and control systems (e. g. , financial, measurement and reward systems). As shown by its employees’ Social glue that bonds people together and makes them feels part of the organization experience. Employees are motivated to internalize the organization’s dominant culture because this helps fulfill their need for social identity.
This social glue is increasingly important as a way to attract new staff and retain top performers. Econet’s culture of shared belief in practices, norms and other practices within the organization helps to energize everyone to do their jobs to promote successful strategy implementation. For example, Econet wireless culture is built around listening to customers and empowering employees (both authority and responsibility); it promotes the execution of a strategy that supports superior customer service.
As revealed through by Econet Wireless Zimbabwe scooping social responsibility award and the inaugural Marketers Association of Zimbabwe Superbrand award ahead of 87 entries in a competition that sought reveal brand market dominance, longevity, goodwill, customer loyalty and overall market acceptance Because of organizational culture, staffs and employees of Econet wireless understand the mission, vision, and goal of their present organization.
According to individuals, the organization has become employee-oriented and customer-oriented to adjust and cope up to the continuous change in the industry. Thus, according to this, majority of the staffs at Econet wireless undergone special training for the progress of both personnel and organization. It is also revealed that organizational culture enables the company to acquire new skills to enhance effectiveness as a learning oragnisation. It also promotes employee familiarisation with the overall operation of the organization.
In other words, organizational culture facilitates the generation of well-rounded employees who are well-equipped and capable of providing newer or better products and services for their customers, resulting to having an effective and competent strategic implementation of the company of consolidating the number one(no. 1) market leadership position has been achieved through: Innovation Econet has been introducing innovative communication products and services since it commenced operations.
During the current year Econet launched two ground breaking services – mobile broadband and EcoLife insurance Cost of Services and products Econet has made it possible for the cost of mobile telephony and services to reduce in real terms since mobile became available. The company has used a strategy of increasing availability of sim cards and availing low cost handsets to the bottom end of the market. This has made it possible for the great majority of Zimbabweans to be able to own mobile handsets and access the benefits of mobile telephony Reach
Econet has continuously invested in increasing network and subscriber capacity that has made it possible to take on ever greater numbers and thus deepen the reach of mobile telephony services. Social responsibility It is supporting over 60 000 AIDS orphans thru the Capernaum Trust and over 600 students in high schools and the Health sector thru grants to the University of Zimbabwe school of Medicine and support to hospitals and other health institutions, Company growth The company has grown as it invested in the network capacity from a subscriber base of less than one million to the current five 5 million subscriber base.
This growth has enable significant contributions to fiscus through VAT, Corporate taxes and customs duties Conclusion With the continuous evolution of the organisational world, a firm’s or industry must learn to adapt to changes and settle for applicable innovations as the way we do at Econet wireless. Indeed, there is no single formula for an organisational culture to succeed. A firm’s or industry’s future has multiple possibilities, thus one must learn to think imaginatively in order to develop and cope with challenges.
The challenge then for firm’s or industry’s in dealing with firm’s or industrial transitions, is by learning and actively managing change. This in turn, can be facilitated by organisational culture. Hence, in Econet, employees need to be equally empowered. This empowerment results to an increased competence, self-esteem and self-respect, which are very significant to one’s well-being. In addition, generating an environment in the workplace that results in employees feeling better about themselves when they are in it results in love of their work.
However every individual has different culture and beliefs that he works with and when he joins an organization that has a completely different culture and beliefs from his own, he should be allowed to internalize himself first with the organization’s culture and values to know whether he can cope with them or not. In cases where an Econet’s culture changes, employees must first of all be notified and made to learn the modification of the old culture as this will affect their performance.
And this must be binding on all member and staff of the company as this will encourage uniformity among members of the organization and thus enhance commitment and group efficiency. BIBLIOGRAPHY Colin Gilligan and Richard M S Wilson (2003) Strategic marketing Planning, Butterworth Heinman Collins, J. C. and Porras, J. I. (1994). Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies. New York: Harper Business. Schein, Edgar H. 1992 (copyright 1985). Organizational Culture and Leadership. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers.
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