Posted on September 24, 2001 10:35 PM
Full citation: Edgar H. Schein, Sloan Management Review, MIT, Fall 1996.
I was thinking about Venn diagrams again today. I stumbled on this article in my O&M course. Although the article is focused on organizational learning, I felt there are a few things I know I learned from the article that can be directly applied to the IA/UX community.
It's kind of dated but I think the IA community can read more into the application of understanding these three cultures of management:
the culture of engineering, the culture of CEOs, and the culture of operators
1) engineers could be mapped to the IA/UX: wanting to create a change for the operator(user)
2) executive cultures map to all the managers/supervisors/executives in an organization(the budget and product devevlopment process)
3) operators map to the users of a system or product(product users or a website vistor)
Bottomline...why can't we all just get along? Currently we can't because we don't know each other's language for "stuff." I think someone in the past on the SIGIA list or one of the IA Summits described that IAs should learn the language of marketing folks and business. This was conveyed in a digram more recently at Lou's Bloug with Jess McMullen on "IA Areas of Practice" and the emphsis on having a "minor" in areas of users(user research, contextual inquiry), content(metadata, taxonomy, writing), or context(business, ROI).
If you're an "innie" what culture that your organization prescribe to? If you're an "outie" how can you relate to each culture from the different settings you've been exposed to?
Refer to the IA/UX Sept 2002 Cocktail Hour for deails on "innies" and "outies."