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Akperov I., Maslikova J.
(Rostov-on-Don, Russia)

Published: Collected research articles, Bulletin of Russian Communication Association "THEORY OF COMMUNICATION AND APPLIED COMMUNICATION", Issue 1 / Edited by I.N. Rozina, Rostov-on-Don: Institute of Management, Business and Law Publishing, 2002. - 168 p. P. 5-8

Organizational structure of most enterprises of former USSR as a rule was based on functional principle in accordance with the kinds of work being carried out by different sub-divisions. Functional structure suited perfectly to the organizations, when they operated in condition of stable centralized economy. Soviet power took much attention to organizational culture at enterprises, so there were corporate parties and celebrations, demonstrations, meetings, firm uniform and symbolic.

Such actions tied people with organizational spirit of the organization and bound to their workplace.

However, when panned economy has gone, free market in Russia appeared and privatization took place, Russia market began to change. It became clear, that to stay competitive an enterprise should have such organizational structure that made possible all the work to be focused upon the particular production and specific customer. Such approach makes necessary working out strategic aims of the firm.

The new period of economic development has made managerial tasks more complicated that led strict self-organization at enterprises. Demand in organizational culture and its structure appeared.

We consider organizational culture as combination of ideas, views, values shared by all the members of the organization that specifies directions of behavior and actions of the people. Ideas, views, values can be absolutely different, it also depends on the things at the basis of the organization: interests of the whole organization or individual members. Values or the organization can be expressed to its members through symbolic means of spiritual and material environment - style of behavior and communication, symbolic, traditions, style of clothes.

Modern concept of management considers social responsibility of management to the Russian society as a whole and to the people working in the organization to be the key element. Today attention is given to a person as the key recourse of the company and to forming conditions for developing his or her potential and ability to effective work. Corporate culture is one of the most powerful aids of employees attracting and motivating. As soon as a person meets his needs of the first level (material), other needs become necessary to him: status in the group, common values - and organizational culture plays most important role at this point.

Corporate culture gives to a firm certain concrete material result. Favorable atmosphere inside of the firm has not only material but also spiritual side.

The key principle is creating common psychology and common aim of the people who represent the staff of the company. The head of the company forms the basis of organizational culture; his ideology, professional experience and attitude specify atmosphere in the organization.

While creating organizational culture it is necessary to understand that it can not be managed directly. It is possible only to create conditions for its development. It is obvious that culture of human behavior depends on the type of personality, and in the same way organizational culture of a company depends on the type of the company and is specific in the way a firm and personnel is specific.

Individuality of organizational culture touches such matters as specialization of a firm, personality of its leader, individual peculiarity of each employee, style of its head and management (authoritarian, consulting, partner, democratic), problem solving process, spreading and exchange of information, character of contacts between the employees.

There are four types of corporate relations in modern Russia:

  1. If an organization functions in accordance with system of rules, procedures and standards, that guarantee its effectiveness, organizational culture is bureaucratic- role one. There is a strict administrative hierarchy between employees of such Russian companies, each person of which bears certain labor responsibilities. The main source of power being not personal traits but position in hierarchical structure. Only the head takes all decisions. Bureaucratic- role organizational culture can more often be seen in large Russia companies, which work at rather stable market and have stable position.
  2. Another type of organizational culture in Russia is power one that is formed most of all at the companies where a leader is at the same time manager and owner. Besides administrative power, he possesses good leader characteristics. There is a group of top managers besides such leader and he manages the firm with their help. But the last word is always his. Employees in a company with such type of culture can be less limited in their actions than in bureaucratic- role organization, they have more initiative and even take part in decision making. But they are controlled more strictly. Besides formal bearing responsibilities, people are expected to show personal loyalty to the boss, and this particular fact is the crucial. The power organizational structure is preferable in the companies at the beginning of their activity, as it promotes mobility and helps to adopt at the market easily, however firm mobility depends upon personal and professional characteristics of its head.
  3. Some Russia enterprises succeed due to person-oriented organizational culture. Top professionals with high level of personal responsibility work in such organizations as a rule. Person-oriented organizational culture gives huge possibilities both for meeting ambitious needs and for realization of personal interests and initiative of employees. It is based upon the ability of employees to come to compromise and their independence from each other. As a rule activity of employees is not controlled but only co-coordinated by their supervisors. Subordinates bear much independence and can work in accordance with a flexible schedule. The main criteria of effectiveness in such companies is professional and thorough realization of responsibilities been taken. At the same time we can see cooperative friendly relationships between employees at companies with person-oriented organizational culture. Hierarchy of relationships can characterize this type of culture: the head has position of the first among equals, all the decisions being taken collectively. Ordinary employees take part in this process personally and are always aware of the plans of the heads. Russian organizations of this type mostly operate in legal offices, consulting firms, architectural bureaus, design studios.
  4. The fourth type of organizational relations in Russia is problem-oriented culture. It can be seen in the firms that operate to solve specific tasks. The structure of such organizations is rather vague. However job responsibilities of each employee are strictly formulated and each person is responsible for his particular sphere. The work of employees is strictly controlled; sometimes system of reporting is used. The head of such organizations acts as a coordinator, and does not stress his leadership. Like in the firms with person-oriented cultures the decisions are made collectively and all the employees have asses to internal information. Such culture is effective when situation needs of market are specifying in the activity of organization.

Philosophy of a firm is connected to the philosophy of leadership, as leader is the person who possesses the whole specter of power, creates internal and external image of enterprises. In Russia of reconstruction period image of a company was formed in chaos form as compared with present day situation when image of firms is being thought over thoroughly. From the very first step a leader should understand that an ideal image of the organization is specified by its tasks. The leaders of an enterprise have not only created a credo of its organization, but bear responsibility for it, it has not been seen in Russia yet.

For example, it can be illustrated by mass panic of Russian citizens due to failure of pyramid "MMM" shareholders of which were 50 million Russian citizens.

It is common to consider personnel flow in the company to be the main criteria of organizational culture. Many objective and subjective components specify atmosphere in the company, but they can be divided into four groups:

  • professionalism of each employee and high level of professional interaction in the organization;
  • loyalty to the firm (it can be real, pragmatic and forced);
  • interpersonal relations in the organization;
  • material and moral stimulus of encouragement.

One of the most important points is considering organizational purposes as his own ones by an employee; he has also to see his professional perspectives and care of the leaders. Positive attitude of the heads, objective evaluation of each employee's achievements, providing possibilities of professional and career development, sound psychological climate in the organization, understanding the importance of the job being fulfilled and personal importance for its realization, mutual understanding with heads and colleagues.

Good psychological climate and friendly relationships allow people use each other's potential for achieving personal goals. The more difficult the situation is, the more competitive companies with good corporate culture are, having traditions and people who are ready to support their firm and each other.

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    About the authors:

    Akperov Imran G.
    Ph.D., Professor,
    Rector, The Institute of Management, Business and Law,
    Rostov-on-Don, Russia,
    e-mail: rector@iubip.ru

    Maslikova Zhanna V.
    Ph.D., Associated Professor,
    Head of Psychology Department,
    The Institute of Management, Business and Law,
    Rostov-on-Don, Russia


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