On Corporate Culture and Training Meetings
Corporate or organizational culture is supposed to be the way of thinking characteristic of a certain organization, most often referring to the employees of a firm. The term is not so old one, although some aspects of this idea must have existed throughout the history of business, but only recently it turned into a sacred cow worshipped by senior managers in the companies in the whole world.
Most notably it is seen in the efforts of the companies’ leaders to instill certain feelings (of loyalty to the company, camaraderie between the employees, perception of a cohesive group and so on) by means of meetings, trainings, seminars, festivities and so on. Maybe some of them even manage to make all these things fit into overall pattern of the company’s work, but most often they may be characterized by one word: “god-awful”.
The employees are gathered together and have to participate in various kinds of activities that are supposed to encourage creative spirit, feeling of common goal and so on. The activities vary from performing physical exercises to reading self-written poetry aloud and drawing pictures on topics assigned by a corporate psychologist – all in all, it may be anything that has nothing to do with the work these people are actually supposed to do. Having spoken to a number of people who have to deal with it in their professional life, I have so far only heard negative feedback about this practice – people simply do stupid things and feel stupid while doing them, but as long as their superiors want them to do it, they obey.
Thus, instead of doing their work or undergoing training in fields concerning their specialization, grown-up people draw pictures, sing songs, perform psychological tests and so on. In my opinion, such activities may result in anything, but not in creation of feelings they are supposed to be producing. People may start to unite, but only along the lines of commonly considering their chief executives to be mad. We should all remember that famous businessmen of the past, like Ford and Carnegie, managed to build their empires from nothing but their own creative abilities and led thousands of people who were extremely loyal to them – and all this was done without resorting to trainings, meetings and psychological testing.