Ford Motor Company’s Organizational Culture Analysis

Ford Motor Company’s organizational culture and characteristics case study and analysis
A 2012 Ford Mondeo Titanium pre-production model. Ford Motor Company’s organizational culture promotes teamwork and excellence. (Photo: Public Domain)

Ford Motor Company’s organizational culture influences the firm’s drive toward higher performance to achieve its vision of industry leadership. A company’s organizational culture defines the values, customs and traditions that affect individual and group behaviors. Ford uses its organizational culture to maintain a high-performance workforce. As the fifth biggest player in the global automobile market, the company needs to maintain high productivity and effective support for technological and process innovation. These needs are met through an organizational culture that embodies Ford’s vision and mission statements, with emphasis on excellence and teamwork.

Ford Motor Company succeeds partly because of tis organizational culture. The features of this culture are linked to the firm’s mission and vision, and the nature of its business.

Features of Ford Motor Company’s Organizational Culture

Ford’s organizational culture is defined in the company’s One Ford plan, which was implemented under former CEO Mulally’s leadership in 2008. In the plan, the firm aims to unify its global organization to achieve consistency and synergy. Based on this plan, the following are the main characteristics of Ford’s organizational culture:

  • F: Foster Functional and Technical Excellence
  • O: Own Working Together
  • R: Role Model Ford Values
  • D: Deliver Results

Foster Functional and Technical Excellence. Ford Motor Company emphasizes excellence in its organizational culture to support innovation. The firm recognizes the importance of excellence to push its performance higher. Ford has training programs to support this characteristic of its organizational culture. Employees are encouraged to learn and improve, and contribute ideas for organizational development. This feature of the organizational culture supports Ford’s generic strategy adjustment toward broad differentiation.

Own Working Together. In the One Ford plan, teamwork is among the most important priorities in the company’s organizational culture. This characteristic of the firm’s organizational culture entails employee participation. The company also emphasizes personal development through team involvement and support. Ford’s organizational culture facilitates teamwork combined with individual knowledge and skills development.

Role Model Ford Values. Ford Motor Company’s employees represent the business and its values. This feature of the firm’s organizational culture builds integrity and positive behaviors among workers. For instance, Ford’s values include initiative, courage, and corporate citizenship. The company’s organizational culture also focuses on quality, safety and sustainability in all business activities.

Deliver Results. This characteristic of Ford’s organizational culture is all about effectiveness in satisfying customers and achieving business goals. The company also highlights responsibility and accountability. By delivering results, Ford maximizes financial performance through its organizational culture. In addition, this feature of the organizational culture motivates Ford’s employees to achieve higher levels of career development to deliver more to customers and other stakeholders.

Ford Motor Company’s Organizational Culture Advantages & Disadvantages

The main advantage of Ford’s organizational culture is its support for unity through teamwork. Prior to the implementation of the One Ford plan, the company had different cultures and product lines in different regions. Today, the firm’s organizational culture brings improved business capabilities based on synergy through unity. However, a disadvantage is that the firm does not specifically address flexibility. Theoretically, flexibility in Ford’s organizational culture can promote resilience and efficient problem-solving processes.

References
  • Alvesson, M. (2012). Understanding organizational culture. Sage Publications, Inc.
  • Ford Motor Company (2015). Supporting One Ford.
  • Ford Motor Company Form 10-K, 2014.
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  • Martin, J., & Frost, P. (2011). The organizational culture war games. In M. E. Godwyn & J. H. Gittell (Eds.), Sociology of Organizations: Structures and Relationships (pp. 315-336). Sage Publications, Inc.
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