Thursday, October 17, 2013

Shared and unwritten culture rules in Organizations

Charles Handy analyzed the shared and unwritten rules of workspace behavior in his book "Understanding organizations". He identified four main groups of behaviors or types of culture.

Handy used analogies to illustrate the main features of each culture. You may already have a good idea of the culture of your organization. The images below will provide you more information about the types of culture they depict.


A spider's web depicts power cultures. These organizations are usually controlled
by one main character. Such cultures are common in family-run business and small entrepreneurial companies.


A net illustrates the linkages between individuals that are typical of task cultures.
Task cultures tend to be responsive and flexible. They are often advertising agencies, high-tech companies
and other research-based organisation.


A Greek temple represents role cultures. These gain their strength from the various functions, rules, roles and procedures in an organisation. Large organisations tend to have this type of culture.


The individual is of paramount importance in person cultures, the organisation is secondary.
The legal and medical professions are good examples of this type of culture.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

(ISC)² Security Congress 2013 in Chicago

The (ISC)2 Security Congress 2013 (30 September 2013) in Chicago focused on the challenges facing information security practitioners – but what are they and what are the solutions?

Lessons to be learned
  • It is important for the business to understand the nature of the threat against the business and the impact of a breach on production, finances, intellectual property and reputation;
  • Organisations need to be able to continually monitor their networks and have the ability to detect and mitigate intrusions as quickly as possible;
  • Security policies and procedures need to be updated regularly and enforced to help information security keep pace with the constantly evolving threat landscape;
  • Malware is increasingly customised and targeted. This means organisations need to be prepared for unknown attacks. But that does not mean all other attacks go away. Basic IT security remains vital;
  • Human beings are often the weakest link. Consequently, an extremely high proportion of attacks involve a social engineering element. Security awareness training is therefore indispensable;
  • Attackers may be using customised attacks, but operating methods typically remain the same. Though intelligence sharing, businesses can continually update their defence strategies.

Monday, October 7, 2013

What makes a good manager?

Being a manager of people is a somewhat unnatural act and many managers fail to deliver,
says Julian Birkinshaw, professor of strategy and entrepreneurship at London Business School.
He tells Della Bradshaw that good management is about giving power away, not micromanagement.

See the video here (Financial Times Website).