Two more critical dimensions of Corporate Culture

Part 2 of 2

The second recently defined cultural dimension is “Tolerance for Uncertainty.” This dimension is arranged from “Uncertainty” to “Minimized Uncertainty.” Though perhaps less obvious than “Dress Code,” this Cultural Dimension defines the cultural tolerance for risk within an organization.

An organization with a strong scoring around “Uncertainty” does not fear risk – and probably thrives on it. Few rules and regulations probably exist and attendance may be mandatory. Often times, organizations with very high degrees of uncertainty are start-ups or straight commission sales organizations.

On the other side of the continuum is the “Minimized Uncertainty” organization. Here, the organization is fanatical about removing all elements of uncertainty. Organizations that have multiple levels of cross-training, that never have enough data with which to make a decision, or that spends countless hours managing minor projects, score strongly towards the “Minimized Uncertainty” side of the continuum.

Note that the two sides of the number line are “Uncertainty” vs. “Minimized Uncertainty.” At one point I thought they were “Uncertainty” and “Certainty,” but the fact that business is about dealing with uncertainty led this categorizing to be unclear. People seem to more quickly identify with “Minimized Uncertainty.”

If you are interested in the new Cultural Score Card, please contact us. The original copy is still available here.

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Dan Erling