The Organizational Culture of Intel Corporation

Introduction

By examining the company’s organizational culture, it is possible to determine many of its current issues and even predict its success in the market. It is what determines how employees of an organization think, what they pursue, and how they perceive their work (Carpenter et al., 2010). The five key elements of the organizational culture create and uphold its image throughout the years. For this assignment, I chose to write about Intel Corporation since its corporate culture has been changing rapidly to accommodate many new factors while it attempted to preserve its past traditions at its core. The impressive size of this company is defined by many of its successes in the past. Nowadays, the company faces slowing growth and severe uncertainty in the perseverance of the competitive advantage (Clark, 2020). This obstacle makes Intel an exciting subject to explore and predict its future based on its current culture. This essay will discuss the five elements of the organizational culture of Intel Corporation and analyze its possible opportunities for improvement.

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Elements of Intel’s Organizational Culture

Mission Statement

Like almost all major global companies, Intel links its actions with a specific purpose. On the company’s website, Intel states that its mission is to invent and manufacture new technologies that work toward the progress of humanity (“About Intel,” n.d.). This element is clearly visible throughout the company’s history, especially in the 2000s. However, since the company currently struggles with innovative ideas, it began to reform its approach while keeping the same mission statement. Intel’s efforts for innovation now include a wider variety of products, such as Internet-of-Things technologies and data centers (“About Intel,” n.d.). The company continues to work towards technological progress for humanity.

Rituals

As a long-lasting company, Intel has accumulated a number of rituals and common practices that make it stand out. However, they were focused primarily on preserving the inner integrity of research and manufacturing (Schwantes, 2020). The habits of the company’s past made it too rigid, and employees were drowning in bureaucracy (Schwantes, 2020). Nowadays, the company’s rituals focus on ideas and knowledge sharing, as employees are encouraged to express themselves whenever they feel like they have something to add (Schwantes, 2020). These new policies even allow Intel’s employees to discuss their research process and achievements with the public (Clark, 2020). The change in rituals is one of the most challenging shifts for a company, although Intel’s situation required such a drastic measure.

Rules and Policies

It is no doubt that in such a highly competitive environment, a company will have to enforce strict rules. The way a firm handles sensitive information shows the entire world how responsible it is and what values it upholds (Carpenter et al., 2010). To combat espionage from its competitors, Intel had a rigorous set of rules that aimed to prevent any developing technology from leaking (Rowland, 2017). Moreover, the company intensely believed in streamlining its activities as a method for ensuring little-to-no deviation in the product quality (Rowland, 2017). Many industries accept a more open model for internal operations in an attempt to leave more space for employees’ creativity. For Intel, this also means better communication with its customers, as the company opened itself up for dialogue with the public.

Physical Layout

It might be challenging to define a physical layout of a company of that size. Intel Corporation incorporates dozens of locations and works with many companies that manufacture parts of its products. The company owns 171 locations spread throughout 36 countries for offices and manufacturing facilities (“Intel company profile,” n.d.). Its headquarters are located in Santa Clara, California, although the primary communication happens through the company’s internal network (“Intel company profile,” n.d.). Overall, Intel’s facilities try to keep the work environment less strict and formal than before in an attempt to promote inclusion, psychological safety, and cooperation among its teams (“Intel company profile,” n.d.). The firm provides all accommodations for its employees at all sites and strives to ensure their comfort in both work and leisure, which is reflected on its website.

Stories and Language

Every company possesses a story about a critical moment in its history. These stories serve as a foundation for these companies’ images and reflect their values (Carpenter et al., 2010). In Intel Corporation, this story was created by one of its founders, Gordon Moore. One of the earliest of Moore’s statements essentially predicted the future of semiconductors when he said that their efficiency would double relatively to their size every two years (Clark, 2020). Until 2015, the company was able to uphold this promise by pushing the progress in at the predicted rate (Clark, 2020). This story clearly shows the dedication of the company to its ideals and its strive for innovation. It was also made into the term “Moore’s Law,” which is one of the most easily recognized concepts stemming from Intel.

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Opportunities to Improve The Organizational Culture

Intel Corporation has experienced many challenges that caused organizational changes throughout the years, yet it remained true to its initial culture and kept a strict code of conduct. While this strategy helped the company immensely, there is now a need for it to make a drastic change. Rowland (2017) argues that the primary disadvantage of Intel’s organizational culture is “the limited support it has for rapid innovation.” As it can be seen from the previous analysis, the company continues to transform its culture in pursuit of competitive advantage.

While the company is being oppressed by the accumulated issues, it can negate some of their effects. To achieve this goal, Intel needs to continue its transformation from a stable yet rigid firm into a more flexible company that is willing to take risks. With the appointment of a new C.E.O., Intel began to loosen its hold on employees’ behavior and now promotes a less standardized culture (Schwantes, 2020). However, this step alone is not enough to ensure that it stays in the top position in the future.

The geographical segments of the company continue to shift due to globalization. Nowadays, China represents the largest portion of Intel’s revenue, with Singapore and the United States sharing second place (“Intel company profile,” n.d.). However, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) achieved the goal that Intel was unable to reach and began creating microchips that were smaller than Intel’s products (Clark, 2020). This notion calls for a drastic change in approach to the development of new technologies by the company. For example, the firm can start developing a completely new product line and take one of the adjacent industries.

Intel must focus its full attention on innovations in order to stay relevant in the face of potential market disruption. The organizational culture must lead this process by promoting bold decisions, risk-taking, and the commitment to new products, rather than continued stability through old technologies that will lose their relevancy soon. The new C.E.O. of Intel realizes that collaboration and trust are critical for modern-day customers, which is a definite sign of potential improvement in Intel’s situation (Clark, 2020). This loss of rigidity also allows the company to look at its employees in a new light. Intel is often being described as very customer-centric, yet, what it truly needs is also to become employee-centric.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the unique organizational culture of Intel Corporation is a significant factor in the company’s success. Its focus on traditions and stability remained the same throughout the decades, and the company kept its top position in the market of microprocessors. However, there are changes in the computer hardware market that stem from technological advancements of the past years, which put the company’s position as a flagship of the industry into question. The opportunities described in this paper are most likely to be explored by the company, as its current course implies similar changes.

Moving forward, Intel Corporation needs to take the new competitors and the changing geographical landscape of its primary customers into account. As Rowland (2021) states, “the company maintains capabilities to address rapid changes,” yet it needs to focus on innovation rather than stability. Moreover, Intel continues to experience a shortage of manufactured products across the globe, which further undermines its position (Clark, 2020). The organizational culture of Intel might have worked for the past several decades, yet now it needs to change and adapt to the new environment and its challenges. While some changes might lead to a further decrease in demand satisfaction, the company needs to restructure itself.

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References

About Intel. (n.d.). Intel Corporation. Web.

Carpenter, M. A., Bauer, T., & Erdogan, B. (2010). Principles of management. FlatWorld.

Clark, D. (2020). Intel’s culture needed fixing. Its C.E.O. is shaking things up. The New York Times. Web.

Intel company profile. (n.d.). Craft. Web.

Rowland, C. (2017). Intel’s organizational culture for business resilience (An analysis). Panmore Institute. Web.

Schwantes, M. (2020). The C.E.O. of Intel just revealed some powerful ways to fix his company culture. Here are 3 tips to fix your own. Inc. Web.

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