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Organizational Culture and Marketing: Defining the Research Agenda Author(s): Rohit Deshpande and Frederick E. Webster,

Organizational Culture and Marketing: Defining the Research Agenda Author(s): Rohit Deshpande and Frederick E. Webster, Jr. Source: Journal of Marketing, Vol. 53, No. 1 (Jan., 1989), pp. 3-15 Published by: American Marketing Association

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Rohit Deshpande & Frederick E. Webster, Jr.

Organizational

Culture

and

Marketing:Defining

the

Research

Agenda

Contemporary work on marketing management is grounded implicitly in a structural functionalist or con-

tingency

which

empirical

tional

grounded

nizational

perspective

of organizational

derives

has

paradigms

from

and

culture. The authors survey this emerging literature on organiza-

conceptual framework, and then develop a research agenda in marketing

management, orga-

functioning.

recently

However,

the

field

of organizational

into theoretical

behavior

modeling

such

a perspective

developed

a major thrust

management,

research

on organizational

it in a

culture,

integrate

in the five cultural

cognition,

of comparative

contingency

organizational

symbolism,

and structural/psychodynamism.

\(W HEN Drucker (1954) first articulated the mar- keting concept, he noted that marketing was not really a separate management function but rather the whole business as seen from the customer's point of view. In other words, the marketing concept defines a distinct organizational culture, a fundamental shared set of beliefs and values that put the customer in the center of the firm's thinking about strategy and op- erations. Despite this centrality of organizational culture to marketing management issues, there has been rela- tively little scholarly study of its impact in a market- ing context. This lack of scrutiny perhaps reflects, as Ruekert and Walker (1987) suggest, the relatively greater attention given to consumer than to organi- zational issues in marketing in general. For example,

isAssociateProfessorof Marketing,

Rohit Deshpande

of BusinessAdministration,Dartmouth College. FrederickE.Webster,

Jr.is E.B.OsbornProfessorof Marketing attheAmosTuckSchool, ExecutiveDirectorofthe Marketing ScienceInstitute,and Visiting Pro- fessorof BusinessAdministrationattheHarvardBusinessSchool.The authorsare grateful forcommentson previous versionsof thearticle

by

SusanAshford,AjayKohli,ScottNeslin, JamesWalsh,KarlWeick,

andtheJMeditorand anonymous reviewers.Theresearchwas

ported in

gram and by

AmosTuckSchool

sup-

partby theMatthewsFund grant totheTuckAssociatesPro-

the Marketing ScienceInstitute.

Journal of Marketing

Vol. 53 (January 1989), 3-15.

when marketing scholars turned to the behavioral sci- ences for guidance beginning in the late 1950s and especially the 1960s, the study of culture focused ex-

par-

clusively

ticularly the definition of cultures and subcultures as

market segments, culture as communication, the dif- fusion of innovations, and cross-cultural comparisons of international markets (Engel, Kollat, and Black- well 1968; Zaltman 1965). Subsequent treatments of culture in marketing also have been limited mostly to the consumer behavior area. Several scholars recently have begun to recognize the importance of organizational culture in the man- agement of the marketing function. Weitz, Sujan, and Sujan (1986) included organizational culture concepts

in their development of a model of selling effective-

ness.

that greater attention be paid to organizational culture along with structural explanations for managerial ef- fectiveness. Additionally, heightened concern for is- sues of implementation in marketing strategy (Walker and Ruekert 1987) and the development of a customer

orientation within organizations is also raising ques- tions related specifically to organizational culture (Bonoma 1984; Deshpande and Parasuraman 1986; Webster 1981, 1988). In fact, Mahajan, Varadarajan,

Kerin (1987)

have gone so far as to suggest that the

on understanding consumer behavior,

Parasuraman and Deshpande (1984)

suggested

Organizational Cultureand Marketing/ 3

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next phase of development of the field of strategic

market planning must involve a formal integration of

organizational cultureissues. In contrastto the scant attention

zationalculturein marketing, a major thrustinto the-

oretical

behavior

has occurredin the field of

(Hofstede 1986; Jelinek, Smircich,

Kilmann, Saxton, and

Schwartzand Davis 1981). As a result, withinthe past

given to organi-

modeling

and empirical researchon the topic

organizational

and Hirsch 1983;

Serpa 1985; Sathe

1983;

10 years,

organizational culturehas become one of the

discipline (Al-

most active researchareas within the

laire and Firsirotu 1984; Frostet al. 1985; Ouchi and

Wilkins 1985). In addition,practitioner interestin the

topic is evident from the success of books emphasiz-

the cultural determinants of corporate perfor-

ing

mance (Deal and Kennedy 1982; Ouchi 1981; Peters

the major theme of

comparing the functioning

firms with cultureas a

(Pascale and Athos 1981).

Despite the growing interestin organizational cul-

ture among

strong term.Hence some people have concluded

thatthe concept itself is amorphous. The differentdef-

initions stem from different theoreticalbases for the

concept. To provide a basis for furtherdiscussion, we

define

organizational cultureas the pattern of shared

values and beliefs that help individuals understand or- ganizationalfunctioning and thus provide them norms

and Waterman 1982), including

of Americanand Japanese

principalexplanatory variable

behavioralscientists and practitioners, no

consensushas formedabouta definitionof the

erroneously

for

behavior in the organization.

That is,

organiza-

tional cultureis relatedto the causality that members

impute to

quently note the range

ganizational cultureavailable in the literature.

of our article is to encourage

organizational functioning.

subse-

of alternativedefinitionsof or-

We

The chief objective

the development of a stream of researchon organi-

zational culture

quate understandingby

resolved issues in the development of models of

organizational culturecould lead to

weak

inappropriateapplication of concepts

inadequate attentionto some of the basic issues of re-

confronted by researchers We therefore begin by out-

search methodology being on organizational culture.

lining the development of the field of organizational

culture and discussing currentcontroversies in defi-

nitionandmeasurementin termsthatshouldbe useful

to marketing researchers.

in marketing. However, an inade-

marketing reseachers of un-

some false starts,

integrationamong various research programs,

of culture, and

We first provide an historical perspective on the

theory in

on work in

anthropology,sociology, and or-

Fi-

organizational culture,

development of

drawing

ganizational behavior.Then we describea conceptual

frameworkof organizational culture paradigms.

4 / Journalof Marketing,January 1989

nally we discuss specific applications to marketing

problems to provide researchdirectionsfor program-

matic work on the topic.

literature, our purpose

of the

is to describe briefly each ma-

Given the

expanse

jor theoretical perspective on

organizational culture

ratherthan to provide an exhaustive review.

Development

Organizational

of the Field of

Culture:

History

and DefinitionalIssues

As Ouchi and Wilkins (1985) note in a majorreview,

the development

applied to

realization

of interestin the concept of culture

organizationalfunctioning was due to the in the mid-

organizations did not

by organizationalsociologists

1970s thattraditionalmodels of

always help

between

between strategy

models of

another, systems,

ture (Schwartz and Davis 1981).

them to understandobserved disparities

organizationalgoals and actual outcomes,

implementation.

and

Most formal

organizationsincorporated, in one way or

but not cul- example, in are seen as

structure, and people, For

consisting

tasks-the

work to be performed

Leavitt's (1964) model, organizations

of four sets of inter-

multivariate systems acting variables: (1)

to accomplish goals, (2) structure-systems of com-

munication,authority,status,rewards, and workflow,

(3) technology-problem-solving inventions used by

the firm, and (4) people. Cultureis a completely dif-

ferent component

signifi-

cantly

other four subsystems

the

that also

may

contribute

to

organizationalfunctioning and may affect

as a

mediating variable.

European,Japanese,

In recent studies

of difficulties in strategicimple-

of

mentation and comparisons of the performance

Americanfirms with thatof

other Asian competitors,

duce concepts of cultureas possible explanations for

differencesin competitive

ferences in the structuralcharacteristicsof the orga-

nizationswere evident (Pascale andAthos 1981). This

line of reasoningbegan to suggest that models of or-

ganizations that did

organizational variable were incomplete (Ouchi and

Wilkins 1985).

Despite agreement aboutthe importance of culture as an organizational variable, consensusaboutits def-

inition and measurementis lacking. We define orga-

nizationalcultureas the pattern of sharedvalues and

beliefs that help members of an organization under-

stand

havioralnormsin the

highlight the variety

different

vant for different

These differentdefinitions lead to several theoretical

dilemmas in defining and measuring organizational

and

researchers began to intro-

effectiveness when few dif-

not include culture as a specific

why things happen

and thus teach them the be-

organization. However, we also of culturedefinitionsto show that

perspectives on culture may be highly rele-

marketingmanagementproblems.

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between definitions

culture-for of culture in

studies, the distinctionbetween culture and climate,

the appropriate level of analysis,

vey or ethnographicmeasurement, andthe distinction betweencultureand subcultures,including "clans"and "nativeviews."

Early Definitions

In a seminal paperby two anthropologists, 164 defi-

nitions of culturewere analyzed in detail and the re-

sults were summarizedas a consensus statementthat

culture"is a product; is historical; includesideas,

terns, and values; is selective; is learned; is based upon

symbols; products of behavior" (Kroeber and Kluckhohn 1952,

p. 157, quotedby

They

the values and beliefs shared by the members of a

society; the patterns of behaving,feeling, and reacting

shared by a society, including the unstated premises

example, choosing

both anthropology and organizational

whetherto use sur-

pat-

and is an abstractionfrom behaviorand the

BerelsonandSteiner 1964, p. 644).

foundthatculturehad been defined variously as

that pre-

underlying that behavior; learned responses

viously

tional

characteristicof the ways a particulargroup

meets its problems; and anotherword for social real-

of people

ways of thinking,feeling, and reacting thatare

and tradi-

have met with success; habitual

ity, the things people take for granted.

Specifically for the concept of organizational cul-

definitionsofferedin recentstudiesinclude:"

some underlying structureof meaning, that persists

ture,

over time, constrainingpeople's perception,interpre-

and Hirsch

337), "a pattern of beliefs and expectations

tation, and behavior" (Jelinek, Smircich,

1983, p.

shared by organization members" (Schwartz and

1981, p. 33),

and "the system of .

.

Davis

. publicly and

collectively accepted meanings operating for a given

of terms, forms,

categories, and images interprets a people's own sit- uation to themselves" (Pettigrew 1979, p. 574).

group at a given time. This system

Cultureand Climate

Distinguishing mate"as used in the organizational behaviorliterature

is important because some

two.

derstandings about organizationalfunctioning. Orga- nizationclimateis a relatedbutdifferent concept. Cli-

materelatesto members'

to which the organization is

expectations.

between the terms "culture"and "cli-

theoristshave confusedthe

Cultureis a set of shared assumptions and un-

perceptions aboutthe extent

currentlyfulfilling their

Schneider and Rentsch (1987, p.

7)

"cli-

behavior-the

Culturerefersto the his-

summarizethe difference clearly by stating that

mate refers to the ways organizationsoperationalize

rou-

the themes that pervadeeveryday

tines of organizations and the

warded,supported and expected by organizations(the

behaviors that get re-

'what happens around here').

tory

derlieclimate (the 'why do

do') and the meanings organizational members share

about the organization'simperative."

Level of Analysis

Some scholarsview

erty of the group

or technology.

sides withineach individualas a functionof cognitive

and learning processes.

culture is the evaluations people make of the social

context of the organization that guide their behavior.

It is their attempt to "makesense" of the organization.

Some

tal variable, one that cannot be managed

must be accommodated, whereas others

variable endogenous to the organization(similar

ganizational structure),mediating the way in which

the

change. Still others

outcome because it shapes humaninteractionsand is

also the outcome of those interactions (Jelinek, Smir-

cich, and Hirsch 1983, p.

tureis all of these things but thatthe differencesarise

to the

concept. We subsequently

marketing

ogenous or endogenous variable, a property of indi-

viduals

is appropriatedepending being addressed.

Survey Research

Research

Thereis alsoheateddebatebetweenscholarswho would

use ethnographic methodsto studyorganizational cul-

ture and those who prefer to use techniques of statis-

data gatheredthroughsurvey

and norms and values that membersbelieve un-

thingshappen the way they

organizational cultureas a prop-

or organization itself, like structure

Others view it as

something that re-

As an individual

property,

thatcultureis an exogenous environmen-

but rather it as a

see

to or-

environmentalstimuliand

and

argue

organizationresponds to

argue that it is both process

331). We believe that cul-

because of differences in theoretical approach

discuss further whether

researchersshould view culture as an ex-

or of organizations, because each perspective

on the marketingproblem

Versus Ethnographic

tical inference applied to

researchmethods (Ouchi and Wilkins 1985, p.

6). Ethnographictechniques oftenareusedforthe study

of organizational culture,

common for the study of

Joyce

argue that the survey techniques themselves are a

product

of cultureand thus are culturally biased and

475-

surveys organizational climate (cf.

whereas

are most

andSlocum 1984). Criticsof the latter approach

attempted to de-

"culture-bound." Hampton (1982)

a survey questionnaire on culturebased on the

classic workof an anthropologist(Douglas 1982). Any

velop

marketing researcherwho wants to study cultureand

issues should

examine Hirschman's (1986) discussion of appropri-

ate ethnographic methodsfor marketing research.Our

own position is that culture topics in marketing can

and should be studied by both traditional survey re-

remainsensitive to such methodological

search and ethnographic methods. We more specifi-

Organizational Cultureand Marketing/ 5

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cally

proaches in the marketingapplications

Subcultures,

Anotherissue is whether

marily and typically

ganization, such as a corporation, or whetherit is pri-

marily a characteristicof groups or "subcultures"within

the organization. One dimension of this issue is the

extent to which organizations have cultures that are

distinctfromthe

exist. Such background culturescan take a variety of

forms, including departmental

marketing,finance,

Ouchi (1983, p. 468), for example, state: "Contrary

to currentlypopular notions

we claim thatthe

tures that are distinct from more generally shared

background cultures occurs relatively infrequently at the level of the whole organization."Taking what they call a "utilitarian"view from a transactioncosts per-

spective,

regulating exchanges

or transactionsand achieving the criterion of "rec-

iprocity,"meaning

as equitableby

a

lish

mechanism socializes the parties in such a way that

they see their objectives

of the firm. Such a clan mechanism is

thinking about organizational culture. A similarview

has

relate research

topics

to

methodological ap-

section.

Clans, and Native

Views

organizational cultureis pri-

a characteristicof the total or-

"background" culturesin which they

subcultures such as

and manufacturing. Wilkins and

of

organizationalculture,

existence of local organizational cul-

they

define three mechanisms-markets,

bureaucracies, and clans-for

thatthe transactionsare perceived

the organization members.Marketsuse

estab-

price mechanism, bureaucratic relationships

rights of evaluation and reward, and the clan

as

being congruent with those

one way of

been developedby Lebasand Weigenstein(1986).

To illustratethe

operation

practice of Japanese firms

on

seniority,

not

performance. Witha strongclan,

Wilkinsand Ouchi

of the clan mechanism,

Wilkins and Ouchi cite the

of hiringyoung recruits,socializing them, and basing

pay

members'inclinationis to do what is best for the or-

ganization. Elaborate systems of performance evalu-

necessary. concludethatentire organizations areless likely to de-

velop

than

organization.

culturethat is

characteristicof the

not often have the richnessof a

Therefore,they argue, organizations do

groups within an

ationandcontrolarenot

andmaintaina clan mechanism (i.e., "culture")

are functional or professional

unique

paradigmatic cultures studied by

and

Wilkins, organiza-

is seen best as a characteristic

ratherthan of total

organizations.

is

Gregory(1983), in a frequently cited

cultures,

which

she

article, like-

likely to

refers to as

She also argues that organizational

anthropologists. For Ouchi

tional culture generally

of groups

wise argues that any given organization

comprise multiple

"native views."

cultureis essentially a group-basedphenomenon.

ing

concept of cultureas a system of meanings and"learned

Us-

an ethnographicapproach, organized

around a

6 / Journalof Marketing,January 1989

ways of coping with experience," she studied tech-

nical

Valley

is that multiple culturesarenot

as departments of the organization, but may also be

national,

are background context for the

be

given organization.Among the many interesting is-

sues that marketing researchers might examine using

this "nativeviews" concept of cultureare conflict be-

tween sales and marketingdepartments,cooperation

between R&D and of new

velopment

representatives to customers on the basis of ethnic,

regional, or professionalbackgroundsimilarity.

professionalcompany employees

in the Silicon

of California.One of her principal conclusions

simply

subculturessuch

regional/geographic, or industry culturesthat

organization, or may

and ethnic culturesthat cut across a

occupational

marketingdepartments in

the de-

products, and assignment of sales

A Conceptual Organizational

Framework of

Culture Paradigms

The different conceptions of culturelead to a bewil-

dering complexity oretical guidance

to integrate the

retaining

refer to Smircich's (1983a) insightful review of the

organizational cul-

ture, which

various

marketing, we try

interpretation. To provide the-

in

for researchersin

of

organizational behaviorliteraturewhile

the important distinctions being made. We

approaches to the study

she summarizesinto five different

para-

digms.

variable and in the others as a metaphor

In the first two, one can think of cultureas a

for the or-

itself. Table 1 lists the key theoreticalfea-

ganization

tures of

the five paradigms.

Cultureas a Variable

In the comparative management approach, culture can

be viewed as a variable exogenous

to the firm, influ-

encing the development

beliefs and values within the

and reinforcementof core

a na-

tional culture). Such cross-culturalstudies of man-

agement typically

planations such as job

(Slocum 1971) or effectiveness, as in the many stud- ies of Japanese versusAmerican management andtheir

differences based on the differences in

U.S. nationalcultures (Pascale and Athos 1981).

organization(e.g.,

are motivated by a search for ex-

differences in organizational outcomes satisfaction in U.S. and Mexican firms

for

Japanese and

In studies with a contingency

management

per-

variable

endogenous to the firm, consisting

ues developed by and within the organization(Deal

and Kennedy

contingency models, measures of corporate perfor- manceareinfluencedin significant and systematicways

by

ment of

managementperspective on organizational culture is

organizational members. The contingency

spective, culture is seen as an independent

1982; Peters and

of beliefs and val-

In

Waterman 1982).

the sharedvalues, beliefs, identities, and commit-

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Theoretical

Features

TABLE 1

of Organizational

Culture Paradigms'

 

Organizational

Paradigm

1.

Comparative

management

2.

Contingency

management

3.

Organizational

cognition

4.

Organizational

symbolism

5.

Structural/

psychodynamic

perspective

Key Theoretical Features

Grounded in functionalism (Malinowski 1961) and classical management theory (Barnard1938)

Grounded in structuralfunctionalism (Radcliffe- Brown 1952) and contingency theory (Thompson 1967)

Grounded in ethnoscience

(Goodenough 1971)

and cognitive organization theory (Weick 1979)

Grounded in symbolic anthropology (Geertz 1973)

and symbolic organization theory (Dandridge,

Mitroff,and Joyce 1980)

Grounded in structuralism (Levi-Strauss 1963) and transformational organizational theory (Turner

1983)

aAdapted fromSmircich(1983a)

Locus of Culture

Exogenous, independent variable

Endogenous, independent variable

Cultureas metaphor for organizational knowledge systems

Cultureas metaphor for shared

symbols and meanings

Cultureas

metaphor for

unconscious mind

complementary to traditional contingency frameworks used to investigate such variables as structure, size, and technology of an organization (Pugh and Hickson 1976), and which in turn are grounded in functionalist

theory in sociology (Parsons 1956). Like the com- parative management approach, contingency manage- ment research is explicitly interventionist. As Smir- cich (1983a, p. 345) notes, researchers believe that cultural artifacts "can be used to build organizational commitment, convey a philosophy of management,

rationalize and legitimate

nel, and facilitate socialization."

activity,

motivate person-

The

comparative

management

and contingency

management views of organizational culture reflect a motivation to understand culture as a lever or tool to be used by managers to implement strategy and to di- rect the course of their organizations more effectively, to make culture and strategy consistent with and sup- portive of one another. As Smircich (1983a, p. 346-

7) notes about these approaches, they tend to be "op- timistic" and "messianic" (perhaps as a reflection of their structural functionalist nature) and to overlook the likelihood that multiple cultures, subcultures, and especially countercultures are competing to define for their members the nature of situations within organi- zational boundaries.

Culture as a Metaphor

Three other provocative culture are

thropology

ganizational

ways of thinking about or-

theoretically grounded in an-

They describe

not as a variable but as a root metaphor for

the organization itself; culture is not something an or-

ganization

organizations are to be understood not just in

culture

rather than in sociology.

"has" but what it "is." In these perspec-

tives,

economic or material terms, but in terms of their ex-

pressive,

perspectives are called "cognitive,"

ideational, and symbolic aspects. The three

"symbolic," and

"

"structural/psychodynamic.

In the organizational cognition perspective on or-

culture, the task of the researcher is to what the "rules" are that guide behavior-

ganizational

understand

the shared cognitions,

the unique ways in which organization members per-

ceive and

their world (Weick 1985). For ex-

this tradition have iden-

common ideational patterns within American

organizations which they label as "entrepreneurial,"

tified

ample,

systems of values and beliefs,

organize

researchers following

"scientific,"

and "humanistic" (Litterer and Young

1981). Shrivastava and Mitroff (1983) suggest a method

the "frames of reference" managers use

for identifying

in assessing

ogous to the cognitive paradigm in much of consumer behavior research, this organizational culture perspec-

tive focuses on the mind of the manager and views organizations as knowledge systems.

In an organizational symbolism perspective, an or-

acceptability of new information. Anal-

ganization,

ings and

provides a background against which organization

members

appropriate

behavior (Pondy

approach characteristically search for ways in which can and do "socialize" new members to

organizations

achieve

tional identity and commitment. An example is the

ethnographic study

ecutive staff of an unnamed insurance company. Her work describes the corporate ethos ("if you've got anything that is controversial, you just don't bring it up"), organizational slogans ("wheeling together"),

looking

symbols, a pattern of symbolic discourse that

like a society, is a system of shared mean-

organize

and

interpret their

for clues

as to what constitutes

experience,

et al. 1985). Researchers using this

coordinated action and a sense of organiza-

by Smircich (1983b) of the ex-

Organizational Cultureand Marketing/ 7

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rituals (the "Mondaymorning staff meeting"), andother

symbolic processes

tional

to future managers, is strengthenedby the develop-

We believe that

improving marketing management serves to make

companies more responsive

as noted before, a customer orientationis a type of

organizationalculture).Hence, though between the first two and the other three

of organizational culture on the basis of an

mental-metaphoricalclassification,

all five

butions

re-

search and methodological implications

paradigms.

management. Table

we now examine

instru-

that help create shared

organiza- mentand application of sound

the

theory.

meanings.

From a structural/psychodynamic

perspective,

to customerneeds (and,

we

distinguish

paradigms

their potential contri- of

marketing

research goal is to discoverstructural patterns thatlink the unconscious human mind with overt manifesta-

tions in social

ratherthan

as

lustrationis

on

cation of

thinking, feeling, intuition, and sensing.

arrangements. Researcherssee

expression

orga-

nizations as a form of human

goal-oriented,problem-solving

Jungianarchetypes to suggest

managerialstyles

The

instruments.An il-

the work of Mitroff (1982), who draws

a

fourfold classifi-

paradigms to the study

in terms of

and

improvement

based on combinationsof

2 summarizesthe

marketing

of the five

moretraditional structural/functionalist views

perspective

in

the organizational so-

much

marketing

which

perspective, see Walker

are also consistentwith the

of organizationalculture, as embodiedin the first two approaches of comparativemanagement and contin- gency management, are more theoretically and meth-

odologically consistent with

ciology

implicitly grounded.(For an

excellentrecent example of this

and Ruekert 1987).

implicitly

erature.

ing researchers, as they

the diverse

conceptual

searchin thatfield. For instance, in some

vestigations,

of innovativenessin an

by which new sales representatives are integrated into

a

from organizationalbehavior, recognize

ComparativeMarketingManagement

single-country

generalize knowledge

Relatively little research,especiallyempirical, has been

done on

Even

ketingmanagers are scarceandfew

made to

(or examine the limits of such

see an

cepts of

cantly versus customizationof international marketingpro-

grams. Improved communication technologies and distri-

bution

need for

knowledge

issues that

marketingstrategies, have led to a greater

cross-national marketingmanagement issues.

studies of

problemsfacing mar-

attempts have been

about these problems

generalizability).

We

management literatureis

They

instrumental perspective of muchof this lit-

However, it is vitally important that market-

readthe

background literature

and theoretical perspectives

guiding

re-

specific in-

such as

those exploring the determinants

organization or the processes

such

inquiry,

these

more specific applications of

of

Organizational

to

Marketing

Culture

In

defining

opportunity for the rigorousapplication of con-

organizational

culture to

enhance

signifi-

the researchon basic issues of standardization

systems,

as well as the

development of global

about

marketingmanagement

be classified primar-

salesforce, the cognitive or symbolic perspective on

may be muchmorerelevant.To

traversenationalboundaries

(Davidson 1982). How-

ever, what little work has been reported in the com-

parativemarketing literaturecan

ily

comparativemarketingmanagement,

organizational culture

encouragemarketing scholarsto pursue

we now turn to

theoretical perspectives to marketing management

problems.

as cross-nationalconsumer behavior, ratherthan

research.

We can begin to rectify

this omission if we take

avenue of inquiry the success or failure

Eu-

in

point

out,

the basic

whetheror not to "go global,"

but ratherhow to and structures

personnel,

channel institutions, and organi-

need-

comparativemanagementapproach is

of a local culture

in orderfor the strategy to be successful. As

and Hoff

very

note, the Coca-Cola Company and different approaches to global mar- adherentof stan-

as one major

of multinational corporations(whetherAmerican,

ropean, Japanese, or other)

keting practices.

mentals of

andHoff (1986)

marketing

is not

ratherto what degree. The issue addressedhere is not

but

question in global

the globalizationcontroversy. As Quelch

This issue involves the very funda-

"exporting" their mar-

Concepts

Applied

Specific theoreticalstructures might be appropriate for

the research

agenda for organizational culturein marketing, it makes

sense to try to identify

might flow fromthe organizational culture paradigms. Though we cannotbe exhaustivein such an endeavor,

we

rectionsthat will

lectual territory in marketing.

objective in developing a research

agenda

scholars is

of marketing

management.

terventionist,

managementpractice, and the teaching of marketing

but are committed to the

specific marketingproblems.

a set of researchissues that

researchdi-

how to tailor marketingprograms(includingproducts

and communications) to customers,

adaptmanagementpolicies, programs,

to local

zations. A

ed to examine the

thatnecessitate modification/adaptation of marketing

specific aspects

hope

to be

provocative in suggesting

develop relatively unexplored intel-

Our specific

on

organizational culture topics for marketing

to

contribute to the study

In this endeavor we

are explicitly in-

premise that

strategy

Quelch

Nestle have

keting-Coca-Cola being a greater

8 / Journalof Marketing,January 1989

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Implications

!

Organizational

Paradigm

1.

2.

Cbmparative

marketing

management

Contingency

marketing

management

3. Marketing

cognition

4. Marketing

symbolism

5.

Structural/

psychodynamic

perspective

marketing

in

of Organizational

TABLE2

Culture Paradigms

for Marketing

Marketing Research Implications

Cross-cultural study

customization of

of standardization vs.

international marketing programs

Research on relative effectiveness of cost-based vs. culture-based marketing control mechanisms in different countries

Research on impact of customer needs satisfaction-

oriented culture vs. stockholder wealth

maximization-oriented culture on market performance

Relative impact of

organizational structure and

culture on innovativeness

Research on

making marketing strategy consistent

with culture and structure

Role of CEOin

customer orientation Extent of differentiation of

a firm and its impact on top management

Impact

creating and disseminating a

marketing department

in

"marketing marketing" to

of environmental change on the nature and

effectiveness of brand management structures

Research on the creation, dissemination, and use of marketing knowledge in firms

Study

of

impact of organizational restructuring on marketing cognitions

shared

Research on sources of

involving marketing

marketing/R&D

development process)

organizational conflicts

and other

departments (e.g.,

conflicts in new product

Research on the socialization of new marketing recruits

Impact of strong marketing socialization on

creativity

and innovativeness

Study

of

importance of organizational symbols in

sales transactions

Research on the historical development of "market-

driven" firms as expression

of founders' wills

Research

l

and Methodology

Methodological Implications Cross-sectional survey research

Cross-sectional survey research

or ethnographic methods

or

Ethnographic phenomenological research

or

Ethnographic phenomenological research

Ethnographic or historical research

dardization and Nestle believing in local market ad- aptation-yet both are extremely successful consumer goods marketers. Though several thoughtful conceptual articles have been written on the relevance of national culture to globalization (Levitt 1983), few empirical studies have examined the issue. An important exception is the re- cent work of Gatignon and Anderson (1987) who use transaction cost analysis to explain the extent of con- trol exerted by multinational corporations over their foreign subsidiaries. They find that American mul- tinationals generally take lower control levels in countries where a greater "sociocultural distance" is

perceived (i.e., where American executives feel un- comfortable with the values and operating methods in a host country). Clearly the success of any international marketing strategy depends not only on the extent of its con- formity to customer cultural norms but also on the conformity with the values and beliefs of employees in various host countries, as Hofstede's (1980) land- mark survey of the work-related values of 116,000 respondents in 40 countries suggests in a broader management context. For example, are marketing managers in an East Asian subsidiary of a British par- ent company more or less likely than their East Af-

Organizational

Cultureand Marketing/ 9

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rican

grams? An interestingtopic

impact

fusion of

African cultures. Anotherrelated topic of interestis the relative ef-

fectiveness of various marketing control mechanisms

for differentnationalor regional cultures.

system of methods, pro-

cedures, and devices used by

ensure compliance with marketingpolicies

egies (Park

sions of such

been framed in

monitoring (An-

thony, Dearden, and

1977), yet a comparativemarketingmanagementper-

spective suggests an

for implementingmarketing control. Ouchi (1980, p.

firms ex-

Japanese control," training their em- be monitored closely: "It is

ployees so they

not

employees, since

the

to do

ercising

have

controlhas been defined as a

counterparts to adopt

of colonial

heritages

British

marketing pro-

in thiscontextis theresidual

on the relativerateof dif-

and

Europeanmarketingstrategies in Asian

Marketing

marketingmanagers to

and strat-

599-600).

Discus-

involv-

and Zaltman 1987, p.

marketing control systemstypically

traditional accountingtheory

ing cost and performance

variance

Bradford 1984; Hulbertand Toy

important alternativemechanism

132) provides

necessary

the illustrationof

a

form of "clan

need not

for these

organizations to measure per-

ex-

formanceto control or direct their

employees'

natural (socialized) intentionis

people

what is best for the firm." This approach allows si-

multaneous discretion and control, with

pressing autonomy portant alternativeto traditionalmechanismsof control,

which

creating resistance among employees correctiveratherthan a monitoring

1988). Lebas and Weigenstein (1986) further suggest thatculturecontrolis graduallyreplacing rules-based

control as

clines searchfor new

marketing scholars

within culturallimits. It is an im-

frequently have the counterproductive resultof

who see it as a device (Jaworski

organizationsundergoingproductivity de-

ways

of

managingemployees.

or

superior to

these

An areaof research inquiry for

is the extent to which such alternativeforms of mar-

keting control can lead to

ductivity such functions are salesforce, distributor, and cus-

tomerservice

cost/performance-orientedmarketing cont