Lion tamers and horse whisperers – shaping workplace cultures

January 5, 2018 | Author: Anonymous | Category: Social Science, Psychology, Educational Psychology
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Session 5: Lion tamers and horse whisperers – shaping workplace cultures

Presented by: • Dr Paul Collings

Queensland Crime and Misconduct Commission

Lion Tamers and Horse Whisperers Shaping Workplace Cultures

Paul Collings Senior Prevention Adviser Research and Prevention Crime and Misconduct Commission

Corrupt Cultures Examples Parks and gardens  Executive suite  Facilities maintenance 

Culture “the climate and practices that organisations develop around their handling of people, or … the espoused values and credo of an organisation” [Schein 7] “Culture is to a group what personality or character is to an individual. We can see the behaviour that results, but often we cannot see the forces underneath that cause certain types of behaviour.” [Schein 8]

Edgar H. Schein, Organizational Culture and Leadership. 3rd Edition. San Francisco, Jossey-Bass: 2004.

How are cultures formed? “a group’s culture is the result of that group’s accumulated learning … once a group has a culture, it will pass elements of this culture on to new generations of group members.” [Schein 18] Edgar H. Schein, Organizational Culture and Leadership. 3rd Edition. San Francisco, Jossey-Bass: 2004.

Diagnosis  Complaints  Risk


Isolation Work environment Rhetoric Underlying assumptions

Isolation “individuals will be more likely to share in ethical reasoning and moral intent with members of their own functional group (in-group) than with members of other functional groups (out-group).”

Neil A. Granitz and James C. Ward. “Actual and perceived sharing of ethical reasoning and moral inent among in-group and out-group members.” Journal of Business Ethics 33 (4) 299-322, October 2001. p.299

Working Environment    

Physical environment Work practices Operational structures General morale

Rhetoric     

Public utterances False signals Quality of output Language Tales and legends

Underlying Assumptions Positive


Old-fashioned work ethic

Work-evasion ethic

We are working to a common goal

Our team has to stick together for protection

We are at the cutting edge

We are a neglected back-water

Surveys Response to Surveys: Managers’ trust in information sources – percentage. 45 40 Observed fact



30 25

Reliable Report Never believe anything

20 15 10 5 0






[Source: http:/phoneegraphs.con]

What to do? Recommendation 8 “That the Department of Transport establish a corporate culture that values, and is inclusive of, all staff and operational areas.” Western Australia’s Corruption & Crime Commission. Report on the investigation of alleged public sector misconduct by employees of the Department for Planning and Infrastructure in relation to the inspection, licensing and registration of motor vehicles. 16 September 2010

Lions and horses Targeting key people  Shedding light  Creating expectations  Systems  Deterrence  Leadership 

Key People

Avoidance and resistance

 Denial  Transference  Deal-making

Shedding light Education for  Direct moral instruction  Case studies, role plays, hypotheticals Practical projects Value clarification Empowerment, autonomy

Empathy development Workplace experiences Motivation

Creating expectations  Uncertainty

 Codes and policies  Modelling

Prevention tools  Risk Management plans


 Corporate plans

 Codes of conduct  Policies and procedures  Internal reporting

 Internal auditing  Recruitment  Performance management

 Continuous improvement  Training  Leadership

Implementation  Communication  New technologies  Learn from complaints

 Avoid patchwork

Deterrence  Dismissals  Legal constraints Rewards

Leadership  Integrity  Acceptance  Visibility

Shaping Cultures Symptoms  Complaints


 Isolation  Work environments

 Rhetoric  Underlying assumptions

 Key people  Shedding light  Expectations  Systems  Deterrence

 Leadership

Organisational approach


Dr Paul Collings

Crime and Misconduct Commission (07) 3360 6381

[email protected]

Case study Allegation: misappropriation of private sector grant funds. In 2008 the University received a grant for specified research purposes from the Perfectly Upright Corporation (PU Corp). It is alleged that Professor Julius Flitwick illegally (or inappropriately) used the money to:  Buy two new laptops, one for his home and the other to use at work

 Employ a research assistant who “just turned up one day” and who was later overheard to mention that her mother is one of the Directors of PU Corp

Case study Background information:  The Professor refuses to submit costings for the research project through the usual university processes and has explained to the finance section that he does not need to because he is personally contracted to the project rather than through the university  The Professor uses University resources to carry out the research project  The website for PU Corp includes a press release that states that the Professor has a part ownership in the intellectual capital for the finished project

Discussion  Tenure and ossification Academic vs. Administration  Research funding and ethics

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