Organisational Culture in the South African Context: The X Model

By Jakobus Smit, Johan Ludik and Sascha Forster.

Published by The Organization Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper presents a newly developed model of organisational culture in the South African context. The method and process that was followed for the creation of the model, namely an in-depth literature survey followed by qualitative research, is described briefly. After the literature survey a provisional model was developed. The qualitative research that was undertaken used some Grounded Theory techniques and was aimed at refining the provisional model. The final model, currently referred to as the X Model of Organisational Culture, is then described. Essentially it is argued that organisational culture manifest in three distinct ways; hidden, visible and results domains. The different domains dynamically interact and influence one another. The intent of the paper is to discuss the visible domain where the argument is that organisational culture can be described in terms of five core elements. These core elements are Leadership, Strategy, Adaptability, Coordination, and Relationships. Each of these core elements contains several sub-elements that further help to refine the description. The value of the model lies in its potential to be used as a frame of reference for the design of organisational culture diagnostic tools. Although it was developed for a South African organisation it may well be possible that the X Model is internationally relevant given current globalisation trends.

Keywords: Organisational Culture, Culture Model, Business Culture, Organisational Diagnostics, Organisational Development

The International Journal of Knowledge, Culture and Change Management, Volume 7, Issue 10, pp.73-86. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 755.616KB).

Dr. Jakobus Smit

Senior Lecturer, Department of Information Systems, Economic and Management Sciences, University of the Western Cape, Cape Town, Western Cape Province, South Africa

Kobus has a background in Education, Psychology and Information Systems. He obtained a PhD in Information Systems from Leeds Met University (UK) in 2005. He has been doing research and lecturing at Universities for the last 13 years and joined the University of the Western Cape in 2001. He is also a visiting lecturer at InHolland University in the Netherlands. He has published a number of papers and presented at numerous national and international conferences. His current research interests include e-learning, end-user competency, organisational culture and IS, change management and IS, enterprise architecture, and technology adoption.

Johan Ludik

Dream Coat Network, Cape Town, Western Province, South Africa

Sascha Forster

Dream Coat Network, Cape Town, Western Province, South Africa


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