One of the interesting things about cultural influences is that they are almost automatic and tend to operate subconsciously. Individuals have enough to think about and struggle with in their daily lives without challenging culture. Granted, people are different and many do challenge social norms. But to the extent that values and beliefs can be conceptualized and internalized, a degree of stability, security and clarity if achieved. While individuals do not all hold the same values, a considerable overlap exists. The values and beliefs that are generally shared in a society form the social culture.
Corporate culture also consists of shared values and beliefs. However, some of these values may stem from the organization itself -- from the corporate mission and strategy, or the expecta-tions of leaders. When people join an organization, they usually accept the company's purpose, goals and rules as conditions of employment. To the extent that they accept these values, they supplement their personal values. Yet they may also continue to hold personal values which are not the values of the organization.
Studies of organizational values have shown that top execu-tives frequently have a major influence on shaping the organiza-tional culture, even when they do not project the values held by employees. In one study, employees were asked to identify the organizational values they considered to be most