Culture Shapes Behavior

The power of authoritative knowledge is not that it is correct but that it counts.” [Brigitte Jordan#]

It is therefore a force or set of forces that impact how things are done and what people talk about. What shapes culture? Edgar Schein, professor emeritus at MIT and the father of the study of corporate culture offers a map:

  1. Artifacts — visible, sometimes or often hard to decode
  2. Values (espoused and real) — tested by investigating the gap between what people say and what they do; for example, If teamwork is a core value, why are individuals so competitive? If the organization is user-centered, why doesn’t anyone talk to users?
  3. Assumptions — this is about how we got to where we are; does history clash with reality?

Understanding culture is central to what many of us do.



Valeria is an experienced listener. She designs service and product experiences to help businesses rediscover the value of promises and its effect on relationships and culture. She is also frequent speaker at conferences and companies on a variety of topics. Book her to speak here.