Leadership and culture discussion question


Giberson, et al,discuss the impact that leader’s personalities and values have on organizational culture. They reported that “consistent with our hypotheses, we found that several of the CEO’s personality traits were significantly related to the the extent to which members viewed their organizations as characterized by different culture values.”In the book The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg writes about how the new CEO of Alcoa, Paul O’Neill rescued the company from the brink of failure by completely changing the culture of the organization. O’Neill was former government bureaucrat, and virtually unknown to Wall Street and the board members of Alcoa. He turned the company around during his tenure from 1987 through 1996 by focusing on one major cultural shift- from an emphasis on profits to safety. Originally he met with much skepticism and resistance, but his novel approach was ultimately very effective.

Discuss a scenario where a change in leadership in an organization you were involved with resulted in a significant cultural change. Was it something that evolved with a natural progression, or as in the example I cited, by deliberate intent and stated as such by the new leadership?