Managing Culture and Leading Change

Apple Computers is an international company that is involved in the designing, manufacture and sale of personal computers and electronic devices. It was founded in 1976 by the late Steve Jobs. After dot-com bust, many companies in the technology field, unlike Apple Computers, reduced their research and innovation budget.  Apple Computers has since then been one of the most innovative Companies in the world. One way it displayed its innovativeness was through the release of the most stylish and easy-to-use computers. It also released the i-Pod which was became the most influential product in technology and a ticket to Apple’s financial freedom. Apple Computers shifted gears in innovation after Steven Jobs, the ofunder of Apple, came back aboard in 1997 after being ousted in 1986. They were only able to achieve this through a culture of employing the best and adopting a culture of passion and excellence in their delivery. Apple also has a remarkable cohesive corporate culture that fostras a shared set of values and beliefs in the workforce. The employees have a passionate commitment and common understanding to what it means to deliver just the right product for their consumers. These products involve both hardware and software through, for example, the creation of the iTunes jukebox software which has has resulted in turn-around results in sales o downloaded music. Their innovation has been cultivated through the encouraging culture of allowing everyone to be willing to give put their best leg forward when it comes to production. One of the boldest moves in Apple was the adoption of Intel computer chips in its computers. This enabled them to accommodate the windows operating system side by side with their own. This turn came to the best interest of the company as a way to accommodate itself to the rest of the technology world.

It is obvious that the engineers at Apple forth a host of talent and creativity to their jobs. However, it is not only their individual talent and creativity that makes Apple what it is, but rather also the commitment of Apple to innovation. The innovation and desire to give the best possible product was cultivated through the late Steve Jobs infectious enthusiasm and willingness to make the best possible products in their field.

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According to many theories, the social and structural components of culture are fully incorporated into all the dimensions of the organization. In this way, organizations are perceived as sociocultural systems. Their patterns of shared of shared knowledge, beliefs and values are bound together with the social structure in a holistic component of organizations. In the case of Apple Computers, its culture would then be seen to have been encouraged through encouraging the workers to be closer to each other, to feel a sense of ownership and to the company.

The functionalist school on the other hand assumes that members of a culture adopt it in order to satisfy their own needs. In the case of Apple Computers, the employees of Apple just adopt innovation as a strategy to survive. They intend to help Apple to stay on its feet merely o keep earning a healthy living from it.

The structural functional school, organizations are deeply absorbed by the values of its immediate society and this integration is important for the legitimization of the company’s goals, values and activities. The organization, therefore, adopts a culture in a struggle to fit into the society by serving their needs. In the case of Apple computers, they adopt the culture of creativity and innovation in order to be able to compete in an industry that is flooded by major companies that produce both hardware and software in their industry.

In the ecological-adaptationist school, culture is defined as a series of behavior patterns that are passed on to relate ecological settings to the human communities around them. Organizations thus only stay afloat as long as they can adapt to their environment and produce only what is required by the societies in which they are situated. Apple, for example stays afloat due to its timely production of computers that are cheaper for anyone to buy. They also adopt a culture of innovation to produce products just when the society is ready for them. They also, at some point, decide to integrate the Intel computer chips into their system in order to accommodate more customers in their business.

While each of the theories makes a valid point in the case study, the functionist theory last describes the case at Apple Computers. Apple Computers has a culture to employ only the best people and people who have a passion to work in Apple. Their self interest is negligible the compared to their passion and excellence that drives them. On the other hand, the ecological-adaptationist school and sociocultural schools best describe the situation at Apple computers.

According to many researchers, change usually results from changes in technology, consumer and labor markets, financial pressures and new values and beliefs from employees as well as other factors. These changes must either be adapted to or the company risks failure. In our case study organization, suppose there was a structural change that needed to be undertaken, this would imply that, while in the past most of the decisions were made at the ground level of the company, the decisions would then be required to make at other levels as well. This would impact the impact the organization in that decisions that had already been made would have to be dropped. This approach would result in losses as well as cause demoralization in the workforce. One way this can be done more effectively would be to adopt a change aanagement system that would be effected slowly into the system making it possible for the workers to adapt slowly and happily into the change. For example, those decisions that have already been made in the past would need to be adopted before new changes are adopted

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