Implementing Strategy: Culture and Leadership
What is Corporate Culture and Why Is It Important?
1. The culture of an organization is defined and
identified by such factors as
| The organization’s set ways of approaching problems
and conducting activities and its pattern of "how we do things around here."|
| The legends and stories that people repeatedly tell
about company happenings and company taboos and political do’s and don’ts.|
| The values, ethical standards, and business principles
that management preaches and practices.|
| The intangibles of a firm’s work environment and
atmosphere and the values and beliefs shared by most of the org’s members.|
2. Which of the following is not a fundamental part
of a company’s culture?
- The manner in which it deals with employees, unions,
stockholders, customers, vendor, and the communities where it operates.
- The traditions the org maintains.
- The values and business principles that mgt preaches
- The company’s strategy.
- The peer pressures that exist and the legends and
stories that people repeat about company happenings.
3. Beliefs and practices that become embedded in a
company’s corporate culture usually originate with
- Its business mission and set of financial and strategic
- Influential individuals (often a founder or prior
CEOs) and influential work groups, departments, or divisions.
- The type of org structure it employs.
- The types of core competencies and capabilities
it has developed.
4. Once established, company cultures can be perpetuated
| Systematic introduction of new employees in the
| Constant reiteration of core values by senior mangers
and group members;|
5. Companies, especially large ones, typically have
Types of Corporate Cultures
- Multiple cultures (or subcultures) rather than a
- Strong cultures.
- Adaptive cultures.
- Low performance cultures.
6. Companies with strong cultures
| Have very distinct values, beliefs, rituals, operating
styles, and work atmospheres;|
| Have senior managers who persist in reinforcing
the culture through both work and deed;|
| Are committed to winning employees over to the established
values and beliefs;|
| Work diligently at causing employees to observe
| Promote good strategy execution where there is good
fit with the strategy and hurt execution where there is poor fit;|
7. A strong strategy-supportive culture
| Nurtures and motivates people to do their jobs in
ways conductive to effective strategy execution;|
| Provides structure, standards, and a value system
in which to operate;|
| Provides a system of informal rules and peer pressures
regarding how to conduct business internally and how employees should go
about doing their jobs;|
| Promotes strong employee identification with the
company’s vision, performance targets, and strategy.|
8. Which of the following is not a typical characteristic
of a weak company culture?
- There are many subcultures.
- There is deep hostility to change and to people
who champion new ways of doing things.
- There are few strong traditions.
- Few values and behavioral norms are widely shared.
- Org’l members have no strong sense of company identity.
9. Which one of the following is not a typical characteristic
of a low performance or unhealthy company culture?
- Z politicized internal environment.
- Hostility to change and to people who champion new
ways of doing things.
- An aversion to looking outside the company for superior
practices and approaches.
- Values and behavioral norms are widely shared.
- Promotions of managers that are adept at administration
and internal organization maneuvering but that are short on entrepreneurial
skills and leadership ability.
10. Low performance or unhealthy cultures typically
have such characteristics as
| A politicized internal environment;|
| Hostility to change and to people who champion new
ways of doing things;|
| Aversion to looking outside the company for superior
practices and approaches;|
11. The hallmark of an adaptive corporate culture
Changing Corporate Cultures and Bringing Them into
Better Alignment with Strategy
| Strong management concern for the well-being for
| Receptiveness to risk-taking, experimentation, and
| A proactive approach to coping with the challenges
of changing business conditions;|
| A spirit of doing what’s necessary to ensure long-term
| Top management that undertakes the changes in a
manner that exhibits genuine concern for the legitimate interests of stakeholders;|
12. Changing Corporate Cultures and Bringing Them
into Better Alignment with Strategy
| Is one of the toughest managerial tasks;|
| Involves diagnosing which facets of the present
culture are strategy-supportive and which are not;|
| Requires active leadership by the CEO and other
senior executives, including pushing for new behaviors and communicating
the reasons for cultural change;|
| Entails both substantive and symbolic actions to
transform the culture.|
13. Shaping a company’s culture to create alignment
with strategy can involve
| Replacing old-culture managers with new-breed managers;|
| Changing long-standing policies and operating practices
and making major changes in budgets and resource allocation;|
| Leadership by example on the part of the CEO and
other senior executives;|
| Using company gatherings and ceremonial occasions
to praise individuals and group that display the desired cultural traits
14. Which of the following is not one of the managerial
actions typically taken to build a more strategy-supportive corporate culture?
Building a Spirit Performance into the Corporate
- Employing both symbolic and substantive actions
- Moving in ways that are highly visible and serve
as unmistakable signals of the seriousness of management’s commitment to
a new climate and culture.
- Trying to mold the org into a solid, competent team
that is psychologically committed to superior execution
- Changing the organization culture in ways which
promote decentralization and employee empowerment
- Executive appearances at company gatherings and
ceremonial event to praise individuals and groups that serve as role models
for the desire cultural traits and behavior
15. Companies that succeed in building a spirit of
high performance into their culture
- Treat employees with respect and dignity and are
- Utilize the full range of rewards and punishment
to enforce high performance standards.
- Grant employees enough autonomy to stand out, excel,
- Hold managers at every level responsible for developing
the people who report to them.
16. In assessing whether an org is instilled with
a spirit of high performance, the key test is
Exercising Strategic Leadership
- Whether employees are happy and satisfied.
- The level of employee morale.
- Whether employees get along and work well together.
- Whether employee turnover rates and absenteeism
- The extent to which the org is focused on achievement
and excellence, has a results-oriented culture, and pursues policies and
practices that inspire employees to do their best.
17. Successful strategy implementers
| Are experts in the use of symbols to build and nurture
a strategy-supportive culture;|
| Serve as role models for the rest of the org and
spend a lot of time coaching others how to be like them;|
| Do a lot of managing by walking around;|
| Have charismatic personalities and inspire others
to follow their lead;|
18. MBWA refers to
Purpose: gather info informally about what is happening
and what is on people’s mind
| The management practice of informally communicating
| Getting out into the field to see what is happening;|
19. One of the keys to successful performance as a
strategic leader is
The task of implanting a corporate culture that is supportive
of strategy requires a sincere, sustained commitment by the chief executive
who reinforces the desired cultural norms at every opportunity through both
word and deed.
| Shaping the values and beliefs which undergird the
| Bringing culture into strong alignment with strategy;|
20. Effective mgt action to match culture and strategy
includes such attributes as
| A stakeholder-are-king philosophy that links the
need to change to the need to serve the best long-term interests of the firm’s
| An openness to new ideas;|
| Challenging the status quo with very basic questions—Are
we really giving customers what they want? How can we be more competitive
on cost? Where will the company be in five years if it just sticks with its
| Creating events where everyone in mgt is forced
to listen to angry customers, alienated employees, and disgruntled stockholders.|
21. Creating a flexible, responsive, innovative internal
| Promoting a culture that accepts continuous adaptation
to changing conditions;|
| Generating a dependable supply of fresh ideas from
managers and employees;|
| Being a leader in developing new org’l capabilities;|
| Empowering people who are willing to champion new
technologies, operating practices, better services, and new products.|
22. Top management leadership in creating a flexible,
responsive, innovative internal environment is especially important in
| Fast-moving, high technology businesses;|
| Businesses where product life cycles are short;|
| Widely-diversified corporations where opportunities
are varied and scattered;|
| Businesses where product differentiation via continuous
product improvement is key.|
23. The leadership task of empowering champions includes
| Tolerating radicals’ ideas and proposals and giving
mavericks room to operate;|
| Tolerating mistakes and failures and not punishing
those people whose ideas don’t succeed;|
| Using such ad hoc org’l forms as task forces, venture
teams, performance shootouts, and projects staffed with volunteers to develop
and test new ideas and explore opportunities;|
| Providing large, visible rewards for successful
24. The strategy manager’s leadership task in implementing
strategy does not involve which one of the following?
- Fostering an overall climate and culture in which
the org becomes "energized" to execute strategy proficiently and perform
at a high level.
- Enforcing ethical standards and values.
- Pushing corrective action to improve strategy execution
and overall performance.
- Making sure that the culture is well matched to
the org structure.
- Keeping the org responsive to changing conditions,
alter for new opportunities, and innovative.
25. When approaching the task of creating a "fit"
between strategy and culture, the strategist's first step should be to
- Contact an organizational behavior consultant.
- Obtain a set of guidelines from senior management.
- Conduct an employee survey.
- Identify which aspects of the culture are congruent
with the strategy and which ones are not.