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Organizational culture evolution: an imprinting perspective

Shoujun Yin (School of Management and Economics, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China & Dong Fang Turbine Co. Ltd, Chengdu, China)
Fangmei Lu (School of Management and Economics, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, China)
Yong Yang (Dong Fang Turbine Co. Ltd, Chengdu, China)
Runtian Jing (University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Chengdu, China)

Journal of Organizational Change Management

ISSN: 0953-4814

Article publication date: 7 October 2014

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide an imprinting perspective of the organizational culture evolution at a large state-owned heavy equipment manufacturer. It aims at exploring sensitive periods and the tension between persistence and decay of imprints.

Design/methodology/approach

It employs the case study approach. Both qualitative (interviews) and quantitative (survey) data were collected, from the directors, middle managements, and grass-roots staffs of Dong Fang Turbine Co. Ltd. Based on the set of four scenarios, both within-scenario analysis and cross-scenario analysis were conducted following the “replication logic.”

Findings

New survival threats are more possible to develop sensitive periods with new imprints than transition periods, and the authors suggest organizational culture can be divided into two categories as the institutional sensitive and the local community sensitive.

Originality/value

This study is not only an exploitation of imprinting theories, but also provides a different understanding of organizational evolution, especially in terms of imprints dynamic. Meanwhile, the case shows how institutional environment and local community has shaped differently the organizational culture.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This research is supported by Natural Science Foundation of China (71432005).

Citation

Yin, S., Lu, F., Yang, Y. and Jing, R. (2014), "Organizational culture evolution: an imprinting perspective", Journal of Organizational Change Management, Vol. 27 No. 6, pp. 973-994. https://doi.org/10.1108/JOCM-05-2013-0080

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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