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Chapter 3. THE COMPETING VALUES FRAMEWORK > The Four Major Culture Types

3.3. The Four Major Culture Types

We now explain and illustrate each of the four culture types.

3.3.1. The Hierarchy (Control) Culture

The earliest approach to organizing in the modern era was based on the work of a German sociologist, Max Weber, who studied government organizations in Europe during the early 1900s The major challenge that organizations faced at the turn of the twentieth century was to produce goods and services efficiently for an increasingly complex society. To accomplish this, Weber (1947) proposed seven characteristics that have become known as the classical attributes of bureaucracy: rules, specialization, meritocracy, hierarchy, separate ownership, impersonality, and accountability. These characteristics were highly effective in accomplishing their purpose and were adopted widely in organizations whose major challenge was to generate efficient, reliable, smoothly flowing, predictable output. In fact, until the 1960s, much of the emphasis in management and in the management literature was on creating hierarchical or organizations or bureaucracies because this led to stable, efficient, highly consistent products and services. Because the environment was relatively stable, tasks and functions could be integrated and coordinated, uniformity in products and services was maintained, and workers and jobs were under control. Clear lines of decision-making authority, standardized rules and procedures, and control and accountability mechanisms were valued as the keys to success.


  

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