Why you Should Change an Organizational Culture Slowly

Changing Organization Cultures
Knowledge Center

Jaap de Jonge
Editor, Netherlands

Why you Should Change an Organizational Culture Slowly

You consistently hear lots of people talking about the need to change the culture of organizations. Technology-oriented people in particular stress the need to do so quickly, radically and even totally.
But in my opinion, it is normally advisable to proceed slowly / gradually when attempting to change an existing organizational culture.

Reasons for not changing organization cultures fast / abruptly are that the RESISTANCE TO SUCH CHANGE is likely to increase if:
  1. The changes are more comprehensive or faster;
  2. The changes intervene deeper in the private life of people;
  3. The people involved are less aware of the reasons for the change;
  4. The current culture is stronger.

  Graham Williams
Management Consultant, South Africa

Why You Should Change an Organizational Culture Slowly

The larger the organization, the more likely will there be a variety of sub cultures - and changes need to occur (if not...

  Paramathmuni srinivas Kumar

Stress Levels Will Be Under Control

A change at any part of organization will have consequences for every other part of the organization. It is necessary to...

  Maurice Hogarth
Consultant, United Kingdom

Changing Culture Carefully

People accept change that is personally advantageous. If there is "something in it for me" then it will be accepted will...

  Warren Miller, CPA, CFA
Strategy Consultant, United States

Good Luck on Changing a Culture

I won't say it's impossible, but, most of the time, the likelihood of changing the culture of a company that has at leas...

  Tom Wilson
HR Consultant, United States

Good Luck, Indeed: Cultural Transformation is crap.

@Warren Miller, CFA, CPA: Trotsky observed that trying to transform a culture is like trying to resurrect a cemetary. Y...

  Javier Elenes
Business Consultant, Mexico

The SIZE Is More Relevant than the PACE of the Change

The pace of the change (fast or slow) is not a decision of the executives of the organization. It is dictated by the env...

  Gregory Johnson
Coach, United States

Careful Dance of (Culture) Change...

It would seem that someone is always promoting CHANGE in many features of an organization. I always ask the first questi...

  Samuell Yew
Project Manager, Malaysia

Big Change / Small Changes Considerations

Culture is a delicate and sensitive thing. It’s not visible and it’s often not discussed. So if culture change is to be ...

  Steven Keleman, Ed.D.
Management Consultant, United States

Size and Complexity Affect the Pace of Culture Change

By its very nature, my experience is culture change often runs at its own pace. What affects any rate of change: 1. The...

  Graham Williams
Management Consultant, South Africa

Why You Should Change an Organization Culture Slowly

Steven K makes good points eloquently. Depending on the size and nature of the change, pace may vary during the process ...

  Iraklis Goniadis
Business Consultant, Greece

The Personality Matters

The more an individual identifies himself through his role or job within an organization and not by his personality, the...

  Qazi Ata
Consultant, Pakistan

Sub-cultures in Different Departments

@Graham Williams: Very true, large organizations have sub-organizational cultures. It’s important to be aware of that. F...

  Abdourahmane DIOP
Management Consultant, Senegal

Culture (Change) Can't be Done Quickly

A culture change does not become a reality in a day. It is the result of interactions over a longer or shorter period, l...

  Tom Wilson
HR Consultant, United States

Contingency Planning and Cultural Resilence

@Abdourahmane DIOP: Well, in general, my purpose for enriching a culture has to do with sustainability and resilience. I...

  David Figuera
Consultant, Venezuela

What are we Trying to Change Anyway?

Inreed we must be aware that in general terms, culture does not change overnight. Thus, pretending to accelerate any cha...

  Mallika T R
Manager, India

Change is Constant - Whether Slow or Fast!

Change is necessary. Change w.r.t. culture is taking place everywhere. However, there is also resistance to change by th...

  Graham Williams
Management Consultant, South Africa

Changing Organization Cultures is Needed

Maybe I'm being simplistic, but: The world is changing - increasing diversification, technology advances, competitio...

  Jaap de Jonge
Editor, Netherlands

Lessons Learned About the Need to Change an Organizational Culture Slowly

Thank you all who participated. I'd like to summarize the key takeaways (so far) from our debate. We started out with ...

  Jose Luis Roces
Professor, Argentina

The Leadership Process is the Key

I agree with Jaap de Jonge’s opinion, after 25 years working as a manager on culture transformation, the key factor is t...

  William E. Linzey
Business Consultant, United States

Speed - versus - Surviving

Changing an Organization's Culture is done for a reason. And that reason is the former culture is not conducive to some ...

  Gary Wong
Consultant, Canada

Organization Culture Sometimes Changes very Quickly

The speed of oculture change can vary. One phenomenon of a complex adaptive system is the Butterfly Effect. If a constra...

  Maurice Hogarth
Consultant, United Kingdom

Cultural Evolution or Trauma

Culture is a consequence of: the Senior Managers’ behaviour x Environmental turbulences. The changing (recruitment/trai...

  David Wilson
Manager, Canada

Is the Existing Culture Toxic, Poor, Bureaucratic or Flexible and Innovative?

In organizations with toxic cultures, change must be quick and decisive. In poor cultures, the problem is typically at ...

  Mariano Talanchuk
HR Consultant, Argentina

Size, culture and complexity.

@Javier Elenes: Size is important, but each specific culture has its own rhythm and cadence of change, which of course ...

  William E. Linzey
Business Consultant, United States

Reply to David Wilson

@David Wilson: Well said, David. The purpose of changing organizational culture is due to a challenge with the current o...

  Michael Norris
Director, United States

Culture is Deep-Rooted

@Warren Miller, CPA, CFA: “Culture eats strategy for breakfast” is a famous quote from legendary management consultant ...

Professor, Ukraine

Change of Organizational Culture

I completely agree with the majority of the authors. A culture change does not become a reality in a day. But the reason...

  Franco Savanco
Entrepreneur, Argentina

Why you Should Change an Organizational Culture Slowly

The matter here is why we should do it slowly, rather than questioning if doing is the right move or not. I believe chan...

  Philippe Guenet
Coach, United Kingdom

Changing the Culture is Left to the Dispositionality of People

Changing culture makes big headlines at the moment and the dominant narrative in Agile is the about developing mindset a...

  Serghei Dascalu
Strategy Consultant, Ukraine

Corporate Culture = DNA

Corporate culture is often described as the DNA of an organization. Of course, we now have genetically modified organism...

  Cebile Sifundza
Student (Other), Swaziland

Change in Organizations

People by nature resist change. Therefore, change has to come slowly in a sense that you must first sensitize them on th...

  D. Liely
United States

Leadership Process

@Jose Luis Roces: I agree the culture of the organization flows from Leadership and the type of leadership needed for ma...

  David Wilson
Manager, Canada

Cultural Change Involves People

Whenever an organization creates change, it needs to follow a strategy and it needs a plan. Most of all the leaders need...

  Dr. Winston Lynch
Project Manager, United States

Organizational Cultural Change Must be on the Continuum

Examining and understanding the culture of the organization is a significant part of the change effort, the transformati...

  Warren Miller, CPA, CFA
Strategy Consultant, United States

Re: Corporate Culture = DNA (Serghei Dascalu)

@Serghei Dascalu: Thank you for your post, Serghei. I appreciate your take on why a company is successful (culture), but...

  Dr. Obaid Aldarmaki
Lecturer, United Arab Emirates

Practical Topic

Sometimes bringing up changes to the organization in a fast track can be considered, for instance if traditional bureauc...


How to Change Organisational Culture

The need to change the organizational culture must be well thought off at management level. Communication about this nee...

  Mrs. Sayran Ghafuri
Coach, Iraq

What Time Does it Take for a Cultural Change in an Organization?

Is it possible to determine / estimate the period of time that the organization needs for cultural change?...

Professor, Ukraine

Culture Change and Sustainable Development

The link between strategy and culture should be well established. So, if the strategy changes, then the culture needs to...

  Borje Vickberg

Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast!

It is difficult and sometimes impossible to change the culture of an organization. Sometimes it is wiser to end the orga...

Manager, Pakistan

Why you Should Change an Organizational Culture Slowly

In my view everything needs to be changed positively with the passage of time and living in their criteria accordingly. ...

  Gary Wong
Consultant, Canada

Different Systems (Environments) that Organizations Face

@Mrs.Sayran Ghafuri: All organizations encounter 3 basic systems in the real world: Order, Complex, Chaotic. In the Ord...

  Mrs. Sayran Ghafuri
Coach, Iraq

Cultural Change is Affected by Emotions

@Gary Wong: Mr. Gary, you have provided a good explanation. I agree with you that the type of environment affects the sh...

  Warren Miller, CPA, CFA
Strategy Consultant, United States

A Question, if you don't Mind. .

@Gary Wong: What's with 'Order" and "Complex" and "Chaotic"? Why do you list one noun and two adjectives? That doesn't m...

  carlos peritus
Business Consultant, United Kingdom

Start Faster with Rapid Cycle Projects and Then Share it and Scale Up the Change

From my direct experience with business transformation, the use of cross-functional teams in Rapid cycle projects allow ...


Culture Rooted from the Word 'Cult'

Culture Rooted from the Word 'Cult'. Cult in turn comprises of two broad elements. 1. Beliefs System 2. Rituals. Thes...


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