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Understanding Organizational Culture.

Organizational structure and organizational culture belong among the concepts with the highest explanatory and predictive power in understanding the causes and forms of people’s behaviours in organizations. Consequently, these two concepts are often used in research as independent variables in explanations of numerous phenomena found in companies and other types of organizations. The influences of organizational structure and culture on other components of management are usually researched separately and independently from one another. However, there are examples of research that analyzes the influence on management of both culture and structure in their mutual interaction (Wei, Liu, Herndon, 2011; Singh, 2011; Zheng, Yang, McLean, 2010). Unfortunately, although it is intuitively clear that organizational culture and organizational structure must greatly impact one another, there has been very little extensive research exploring their direct mutual impact. Exploring the relationship between organizational structure and culture would be highly beneficial, since both of them determine the behaviour of organization members. However they do it in different ways. Organizational culture is an intrinsic factor of organizational behaviour, inasmuch as it directs the way people behave in an organization by operating from within and by determining assumptions, values, norms, and attitudes according to which organization members guide themselves in everyday actions in the organization. On the other hand, organizational structure is an extrinsic factor which influences people’s behaviour from the outside, through formal limitations set by division of labour, authority distribution, grouping of units, and coordination. Therefore one’s behaviour in an organization is the result of the impact of its culture and structure, as well as the influence of other factors. Therefore studying the mutual impact of organizational culture and structure is important for a comprehensive understanding of the behaviour of an organization’s members.