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Fish Can't See Water: How National Culture Can Make or Break Your Corporate Strategy by Richard D. Lewis, Kai Hammerich

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1

CORPORATE CULTURE, STRATEGY AND BUSINESS RESULTS

In this chapter we discuss the mechanisms by which values, beliefs and assumptions are embedded in organizations through the behaviour of their leaders and their work practices. Drawing on the work of Ed Schein and Geert Hofstede, we go on to use the Cultural Dynamic Model® developed by Kai Hammerich, to guide our discussion of how business influencers and national influencers impact the corporate culture in fundamentally different ways: the staid national traits that are slow to change compared with more fluid business traits that can be influenced by management over a shorter time scale. In this chapter our discussion focuses on the business influencers, and in Chapter 2 on the national influencers, using the Lewis model – a triangular representation of national types. In Chapter 4 we bring it all together in the complete Cultural Dynamic Model®.

When Kai Hammerich was a newly minted and hopeful MBA from Kellogg Business School in 1984, he got his first job in marketing at Hewlett Packard in Denmark. To spur sales he came up with a promotional concept to expand the use of administrative computers, as servers with ERP (enterprise resource planning) applications on them were called at the time. The simple idea was to target secretaries rather than the heads of finance, and offer a 90% discount on word processing, email and graphics software, hoping that with use, the customers would need to upgrade to the then much more expensive ...

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