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A Study of Organizational Culture in Ontario Colleges with High Student Satisfaction

Abstract: Academic institutions face countless pressures within a context of ongoing globalization, societal change, and increased accountability measures. The use of organizational culture assessment can assist organizations to understand their current culture and, consequently, to inform strategies for change management. This study examined the perceptions held by administrators at four Ontario colleges with above average Student Satisfaction (KPI) about their institution’s current and preferred organizational culture and their own management competencies. A descriptive research method was employed using a modified version of Cameron and Quinn’s (2006) Organizational Culture Assessment Instrument (OCAI) and Management Skills Assessment Instrument (MSAI). Different culture types were found in the current state at the four colleges. Two colleges exhibited a dominant Market or ‘competing’ type culture, one a dominant Hierarchy or ‘controlling’ type culture and, one a dominant Clan or ‘collaborative’ type culture. Evidence of strength and congruence of organizational culture was found at some of the four colleges. Results from all colleges combined exhibited meaningful influence of both Clan and Hierarchy type cultures. Dominant culture type differed by gender and number of years’ experience in the job. Administrators at all four of the colleges reported use of Clan type management skills (i.e., Managing Teams, Interpersonal Relations, and Development of Others) most frequently. This was followed by Adhocracy, Hierarchy and Market type skills. Three colleges ranked Managing Competitiveness as their lowest. OCAI dominant culture type differed from MSAI dominance at three of the colleges and one exhibited the same Clan type OCAI and MSAI. Desire in the preferred state to increase collaboration was evident with dominant Clan type culture and focus on flexibility. Focus was split equally with two internal and two external, and culture strength was found at two colleges. Consistency exists between preferred dominant culture type and management skills of administrators, suggesting administrators’ skills at each of the colleges are aligned with where they desire their college’s organizational culture to be heading. This study identifies implications for leadership of college culture linked to effective performance. The results build on existing evidence that dominant type, strength and/or congruence of culture is linked with performance effectiveness.

Author: MaryLynn Helen West-Moynes

Source: University of Toronto - TSpace

Size: 4.89 MB
Last Updated: August 4, 2015