JASSD - Journal of African Studies and Sustainable Development (Vol. 6 No. 1, 2023) THE INFLUENCE OF FORMAL AND INFORMAL CULTURAL SYSTEMS ON EMPLOYEES' PERFORMANCE IN CORPORATE ORGANIZATIONS IN KENYA Nazarene Makena; Carolyne S. Mudeje Buya & Alice Kibui


Studies on organizational culture relate unethical conduct in the workplace as stemming from greed, lack of clear codes of ethics, impact of peer influence, among others. While that school of thought might be convincing, the entire concept of the root cause of either ethical or unethical behaviour among employees in corporate organizations has not been fully explored. In any organization where human beings from diverse backgrounds meet to work, there is a high chance that each of their cultural systems, together with that of their organization, determines their attitude and output within the work environment. Hence, it can be argued that employee ethical behaviour and performance are to a greater extent guided by some cultural systems. In that regard, this paper examines the extent to which formal and informal cultural systems such as adhocracy culture, clan culture, hierarchical culture, and market culture influence employees’ performance in corporate organizations in Kenya. It further explores African ethics and shows how a loss in ethical leadership could also culminate into negative culture that ruins performance of employees in organizations. As a way forward, the paper argues that the adoption of African collective values of Ubuntu such as compassion, survival, group solidarity, respect and dignity could help in cultural management in corporate organizations and hence enhance employee ethical conduct, positive energy and productivity. This paper is based on a desktop literature review of an ongoing research that is qualitative in nature and will use one higher learning institution in Langata Ward, Nairobi County for a case study.

Keywords: Formal and informal cultural systems, corporate organization, African ethics, Ubuntu, ethical leadership

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