Posted on 8th August 2010No Responses
People Express’ Corporate culture

PE’s corporate culture was clearly defined in the Precepts, where people are more important then the profits. The company was heavily “clan” or “family” oriented. Employees’ and managers’ work were based on trust and relationships, allowing the company to have a high level of the Adhocracy, so important for startups. The Profit sharing program assured the Market orientation of the company. The Hierarchy was the least important as it was practically flat.

At the beginning, PE’s corporate culture worked very well, providing a very rewarding work environment for employees. This was not only in terms of compensations, where some people were substantially rewarded as a result of the profit sharing program, but also socially rewarding by allowing people to express their capabilities. The culture within the company was very motivating. It provided people with the ability to make decisions and mistakes, as long as these had been done with incentives following the Precepts, and were innovative. All of this gave a different meaning to “work” in their lives. The culture assured flexibility and made employees to work harder toward one common goal.

The fit between the company’s strategy, culture and HR system was excellent at the beginning, when the company had the competitive advantage of providing low cost “smart” services with people working hard in a “fun” and dynamic environment. The company not only hired the employees whose personal traits would complement the corporate culture, it also provided continuous training to existing employees.

Unfortunately, the rapid growth of the company made some people work too hard, bringing dissatisfaction to employees and customers. By the end of 1985, the company even got a nickname “People’s Distress”. Nevertheless, the corporate culture itself worked well from the beginning to the end of the PE existence. After the company was restructured into groups like a “mini-airlines”, it showed signs of high levels of service and productivity.

By Ivan Denisevich

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