Understanding Organisational Culture- Key to Onboarding Success

Table of Contents

Organizational culture encompasses values and behaviors that contribute to the unique social and psychological environment of an organization. Organizational culture represents the collective values, beliefs and principles of organizational members and is a product of such factors as history, product, market, technology, strategy, type of employees, management style, and national culture; culture includes the organization’s vision, values, norms, systems, symbols, language, assumptions, environment, location, beliefs, and habits.

A good organisational culture is key to success of any organisation.  New hires should learn and embrace the new organisational culture as soon as possible, culture and onboarding have a mutually dependent and beneficial relationship.By the time organizations are established, they have generally agreed a set of guiding principles that reinforce the culture. Employees who embrace your culture will contribute to an atmosphere of teamwork, collaboration and greater success. The faster a new employee is integrated into the organisational culture, the higher the chances that they will succeed in their new role. Poor fit with the culture is the no. 1 cause of new hire failure.

Organizational culture is a set of shared values that guide what happens in organizations by defining appropriate behavior for various situations. It is also the pattern of such collective behaviors and assumptions that are taught to new organizational members as a way of perceiving and, even, thinking and feeling. Thus, organizational culture affects the way people and groups interact with each other, with clients, and with stakeholders. In addition, organizational culture may affect how much employees identify with an organization. Organizations often have very differing cultures as well as subcultures. Although a company may have its “own unique culture”, in larger organizations there are sometimes co-existing or conflicting subcultures because each subculture is linked to a different management team.

Characteristics of a healthy organizational culture include

  • Acceptance and appreciation for diversity
  • Regard for equal and fair treatment of each employee as well as respect for each employee’s contribution to the company
  • Employee pride and enthusiasm for the organization and the work performed
  • Equal opportunity for each employee to realize their full potential within the company
  • Strong communication with all employees regarding policies and company issues
  • Strong company leaders with a strong sense of direction and purpose
  • Ability to compete in industry innovation and customer service, as well as price
  • Lower than average turnover rates (perpetuated by a healthy culture)
  • Investment in learning, training, and employee knowledge

A healthy and robust organizational culture may provide various benefits, including the following:

  • Competitive edge derived from innovation
  • Consistent, efficient employee performance
  • Team cohesiveness
  • High employee morale
  • Strong company alignment towards goal achievement
  • Better aligning the company towards achieving its vision, mission, and goals
  • High employee motivation and loyalty
  • Increased team cohesiveness among the company’s various departments and divisions
  • Promoting consistency and encouraging coordination and control within the company
  • Shaping employee behavior at work, enabling the organization to be more efficient



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