A corporate culture model is the organizing principle behind the values, beliefs and attitudes that characterize a company and guide its practices.
There are four main types of corporate cultures: hierarchies, adhocracies, clans and market-based models:
- A hierarchical corporate culture has a fairly rigid and fixed organizational structure.
- An adhocracy is based on the ability to adapt quickly to changing conditions.
- A clan culture is a family-like or tribe-like environment that values consensus and commonality of values and goals.
- A market culture is a corporate environment that emphasizes competition.
Market and hierarchical cultures are considered to be the most controlled, while adhocracies and clan cultures are considered more innovative and creative. In practice, however, all four models have strengths and weaknesses. Most corporate cultures apply principles of more than one model, depending on the particular situation.