Culture Is Not the Culprit

November 1st, 2016

When organizations get into big trouble, fixing the culture is usually the prescription.  That’s what most everyone said General Motors needed to do after its recall crisis in 2014—and ever since, CEO Mary Barra has been focusing on creating “the right environment” to promote accountability and head off future disasters.  Pundits far and wide called for the same remedy when it came to light that the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, deemed a corrosive bureaucracy by federal investigators, kept veterans waiting months for critical health care.  Cultural reform has likewise been proposed as the solution to excessive use of force by police departments, unethical behavior in banks, and just about any other major organizational problem you can think of.  All eyes are on culture as the cause and the cure.

Click here to read Jay W. Lorsch and Emily McTague’s full article in the Harvard Business Review.

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