Case South Asian Journal of Business and Management Cases 4

Case
South Asian Journal of
Business and Management Cases
4(2) 262–273
© 2015 Birla Institute of Management Technology
SAGE Publications
sagepub.in/home.nav
DOI: 10.1177/2277977915596270
http://bmc.sagepub.com
Disclaimer: The authors have developed this case for classroom discussion for programmes in management education,
management development and for practicing executives to enhance skills in decision-making. It is not intended to illustrate either
effective or ineffective handling of an administrative situation. It does not represent or endorse the views of the management
about the issues in the case.
1 School of Business, Centennial College, Toronto, Canada.
2 Center for Values-Driven Leadership, Benedictine University, Lisle, USA.
Corresponding author:
School of Business, Centennial College, Toronto, ON M1K 5E9, Canada.
E-mail: [email protected]
Crafting Organizational
Culture: ‘Getting the Boss
to Work for You’
Basil K.C. Chen1
Michael R. Manning2
Abstract
This case study explores the organizational culture of a privately held company, Service Express,
Inc. (SEI), headquartered in Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, providing customers with onsite data
maintenance service for mission-critical servers. As of January 2013, it had 250 employees located in
24 regional offices in the Midwest and Southeast, generating revenues of around $50 million. SEI’s
vision is to help its employees achieve their personal, professional and financial goals. The company takes
the position that culture drives performance; in particular, the case details how SEI crafts its culture
for a superior organizational performance; it explores various aspects (e.g., service-centric focus,
servant leadership) that drive this organization’s culture. It draws reader’s attention to the notion
that organizational performance (including profit) is a lagging indicator, while organizational culture is
the leading indicator of organizational success.
Keywords
Organizational culture, crafting organizational culture, leadership, servant leadership, organizational
performance, profit
Introduction
It was a beautiful spring morning in Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, with flowers in full bloom and birds
chirping. Ron Alvesteffer, President, Service Express, Inc. (SEI), parked his car at the back of the
Chen and Manning 263
company’s empty parking lot. As he turned off the ignition, he recalled fondly a conversation he
earlier had with his father, who was then visiting his office along with him.
‘You are president of the company. How come you don’t have a parking space right up in front that
says President?’ And I was like, oh dad, that’s so old school. What am I going to tell my employees that I have
to park up close and I have the shortest walk to the door? They’re the ones doing the real heavy lifting during
the day. They’re doing the work. The closest ones are for ladies here so they can get in and out, and the other
ones are for all the front line employees. I’m way in the back there in the leadership lot. We let everybody else
park up front. The leaders can walk furthest from there.1
This attitude symbolized the underlying culture of SEI—that of caring for their employees. Ron walked
the 200 yards to the office building, entered the reception area where he saw the four large glass placards,
each portraying one of SEI’s four core objectives (see Figure 1).
He had come in early for the special meeting, on completion of 20 years of SEI’s incorporation, with
Mike McCullough, the owner of SEI. He had promised Mike that his team would present a comprehensive
plan to double the number of employees and generate revenues of $100 million by 2020—this plan
would be considered most audacious in the history of SEI. With his game face on, he slumped into his
favourite armchair, closed his eyes and mentally went through the presentation he had so diligently
put together with his chief operating officer (COO) and two vice presidents (VPs)—Dwight Strayer,
COO; Kraig Harper, CFO; and Mark Thomas, VP Sales. He was not overly worried about the
detailed financial projections that Kraig Harper and his team had worked out; in fact, he was quite
Figure 1. The SEI Way
Source: From SEI’s Chief Financial Officer.
264 South Asian Journal of Business and Management Cases 4(2)
confident on Kraig’s financial model that the goals could be achieved organically (which means no
external funding requirements). He was, however, concerned about the culture of servant leadership
and the value system of serving the employees and customers that they had so assiduously engendered.
As a relatively small company, it had not been too difficult to drive the ‘big culture’ as he and other
senior team members made personal contact with each employee to inculcate them into the SEI Way.
However, with expanded size and geographical dispersion lurked the danger of being spread too thin
and hence of diluting the corporate culture. Ron was especially conscious that developing the culture
had required diligent effort, immense patience and at times had led to ‘practice fatigue’. He and
the senior team would now need to guard against such fatigue. Would they succeed in sustaining
and advancing their culture of servant leadership in the expanding organization?
SEI Background/History
In 1988, Mike McCullough, a technical graduate, had joined Great Lakes Computers in Grand Rapids,
West Michigan, USA, a company specializing in selling refurbished DEC minicomputers, which were
then the highest selling minicomputers. Within a few months of joining the company, Mike recognized
the business opportunity in ‘servicing’ of the refurbished computers. He persuaded the owners of the
company to pursue the opportunity as an independent activity. The owners reluctantly agreed and
allocated minimal resources for the activity. As a result, SEI was started as a division of the company
with Mike McCullough in charge. By rendering exceptional service to customers, Mike McCullough,
with the support of satisfied customers and minimal capital investment, managed to open service
centres in Detroit and Chicago as well. This greatly increased SEI’s reach and sales. However, Great
Lakes Computers’ hardware business was doing really well too, and it was seeking to become a reseller
of DEC computers. At the time DEC was also looking for a reseller in the Michigan area. DEC
was willing to sign up with Great Lakes as a reseller, provided it gave up its service activities. As an
outcome of the confluence of opportunities, Mike along with a financial partner bought SEI division
of Great Lakes Computers which was then incorporated as SEI in 1993 with Mike McCullough as
the President.
Mike brought along with him from Great Lakes a handful of colleagues: One in particular, Dwight
Strayer, has played a significant role in the development of culture at SEI. In 1997, Mark Thomas
and Ron Alvesteffer, were hired and another pivotal employee, Kraig Harper, in 1999. The year 2002
represents a major inflection point in SEI’s history. Mike, as the owner, would come into SEI for a
while, stir things up things with new ideas and then he would take off for a few days or even weeks,
leaving behind a three-headed management monster—Ron in sales, Dwight Strayer in services
and Kraig Harper in finance and operations, but none formally in overall charge of the company.
This amorphous situation had to come to a head; as Ron explains it:
We went in his office, closed the door and I said to him, Mike, you’re an awesome entrepreneur and you started
this company when nobody else would. I wouldn’t have started it….You’re great at that. But we’re becoming a
real company and we’re growing and expanding and we need systems and development and all that, and that’s
not your strength…training and development is my strength. We need somebody in charge. You’re not here
enough. You’re not around enough and when you are it is kind of messing things up. I think you need to leave
and I’ll take over as President. We need somebody to make a decision. When there’s a tie, there’s no tie-breaker.
We all have different ways to do it. You’ve taught me well, and…if I screw it up then you can get rid of me.
The outcome: In July 2002, Mike appointed Ron as President of SEI.
Chen and Manning 265
Data Centre Maintenance Industry
Data centres may run diverse IT applications on hardware from one specific vendor or from different
vendors. Most small- and medium-sized data centres, tiers I and II, generally have a myriad of hardware
and software solutions. Operators of such data centres have three options for service and maintenance
of the hardware: (a) to entrust it to the original equipment manufactures (OEMs) or software
suppliers, (b) to contract it to third-party maintenance providers or (c) to undertake it in-house. For
small- and medium-sized data centres, in-house maintenance strategy is cost-prohibitive and OEMs
are expensive. Therefore, most small- and medium-sized data centres seek a single-point, third-party
service provider to reduce costs, eliminate finger pointing between the diverse vendors and ensure a
consistent, high-quality service. Third-party data centre maintenance providers can be regional, national
and transnational—each with concomitant advantages and disadvantages. The agility of response
and lower costs of regional and national service providers as compared to OEM and third-party transnational
service providers have been the mainstay of regional service providers like the SEI, which is
today a leading data centre maintenance provider in the Midwest USA.
SEI Philosophy
SEI’s philosophy is service centric; they believe that if the company looks after their employees’ interest,
then they in turn will look after the customer’s interest and profits will follow. This organizational stance
is reflected in SEI’s stated vision, which is to help people achieve their personal, professional and
financial goals. The founder, Mike McCullough explained it this way:
The basics of loving your neighbor and loving one another, and treating people respectfully and caring for
them and being honest and not stealing and all those things, I mean all the biblical values that were shared with
me, those were important and I think they’ve had a huge impact in the company and how we function and
how we act. And it may not be labeled that way but I guarantee you that is woven within the structure of our
organization to carry out those core values and treat people and customers and employees in such a manner that
we’re expected to.
After the Founder’s retirement from active business, senior leadership team at SEI continued to cast and
refine the organizational vision. They continued providing the organization with focus and diligence
to maintain its culture through the organization’s four core objectives. Those employees who were
closest to the founder and worked with him, watched and studied his behaviour closely and overtime
imbibed and articulated his service orientation; to use Zig Ziglar’s quote, ‘You can get everything you
want out of life if you just help enough other people get what they want.’ The words of SEI President
sum up this philosophy.
If I had to describe our culture in one word in what makes us special I think it is service. It goes back to servant
leadership. It goes back to serving our customers to servicing each other. Everybody here is so helpful to one
another and I get that feedback from employees who join us who say after a week I can’t believe the company
I just joined. I’m going home telling my spouse these people are unbelievable. They’re so nice. They’re friendly.
They’re outgoing. They’re offering to help…and we all live the mantra that you can get everything you want
out of life if you help other people get what they want. So I think service is that word.
More recently, the President of SEI asserts: ‘The boss actually works for the employees.’ He believes
that a fully engaged work force unleashes creativity and this inculcates superior work ethics
266 South Asian Journal of Business and Management Cases 4(2)
providing customers with service excellence that leads to superior organizational performance,
including financial profits.
SEI schedules regular sessions, called ‘Vision Talk’, between an employee and a manager to articulate
his/her goals. Once individual goals are identified, SEI leaders then endeavour to strategize opportunities
around employee’s goals. The story of Pieter Winne, presently Manager of Training, Technical
Support and Recruiting departments, illustrates the way SEI leaders help people meet their goals.
Pieter had joined SEI as a service engineer in 2009. Within 3 months of his tenure, he and his supervisor
had a Vision Talk. He had written down his goals. In his personal goal he had written ‘see every
one of my son’s football games’. It was early Friday afternoon and the first game of the season was
scheduled when Pieter received a phone call from the VP of SEI who said: ‘Hi Pieter, I noticed that
on your vision that you want to see all of your son’s football games. It’s Friday, and you have a game
tonight right?’ Pieter confirmed and the VP asked, ‘When are you going to take off work?’ Pieter replied
that he would take off at 5 o’clock. The VP said, ‘Pieter, you live over an hour away and if traffic’s
bad it could even be worse than that. Why don’t you take off around three, so you can miss the traffic and
have dinner with your family before you go to the game tonight?’ Pieter also noted subsequently that
the VP had kept track of his son’s games. The VP had involved himself with a service engineer to help
him realize his personal goal. Such instances have created in the organization a contagious ecosystem
of employees helping each other to realize their goals.
Four Core Objectives
SEI employees manage their activities and make their decision guided by the four core objectives; the
ideas for these objectives were based on Jim Collins’ book, Built to Last (Collins & Porras, 2002). All
employees are aware that any proposal or any decision by them or by leaders is to be in accordance with
the four core objectives: (1) excellence in customer service, (2) employee engagement, (3) margin
retention and (4) revenue growth. The proposal/decision must satisfy all the four core objectives in a
balanced manner. This clarity in decision-making empowers employees, groups and departments to
work together in symbiotic synergy (refer to Figure 1).
Rigorous Recruitment Process
SEI has put in place a comprehensive and rigorous recruitment process to ensure culture and value
alignment for each new hire. SEI invests considerable amount of energy and resources in recruiting
candidates who align well with the organization’s culture. SEI has overtime fine-tuned the recruitment
into a six-stage process: (1) phone interview, (2) chronological interview, (3) ‘ride-along’ with an
employee, (4) final interview, (5) reference checks and (6) the offer. Overall, the recruiting strategy
explicitly assesses for culture fit, identifies candidate traits and talents, gets to know the candidates
better through the ride along, and conducts reference checks to identify strengths and weaknesses. When
necessary, mis-hires are terminated with dignity. The ‘ride-along’ is a unique stage in the recruitment
process. It is a day spent by the candidate on the job shadowing an SEI employee in a relevant
position that affords the candidate opportunity of knowing the job and the company the candidate better.
As Pieter Winne explains it:
I think the term (ride-along) mostly comes from our—the bulk of our positions here are sales account execs and
field engineers…. Typically about four hours, and they’ll ride with one of our employees…. During that time we
Chen and Manning 267
encourage the candidate to ask questions and have a conversation. Get to know that person who quite frankly
they’ll be working with in the future. Obviously we want people that are a good fit for us but we want to be
a good fit for them. It’s a huge commitment. We want them to know this is the right place for them. We want them
to see it with the curtains open. We want to show them who we really are….
For the successful candidate, SEI conducts reference checks from former supervisors to assess
and drill into the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses that were noticed during the previous
interactions.
Effective Performance Measurement
The organization utilizes an effective performance measurement system called the SR5 to measure and
track all the variables that are key to employee development and organizational success. The premise
here is ‘what gets measured gets done.’ The purpose of the performance metrics is not to beat people
up, rather it is to help organizational actors understand what is happening in the organization and help
to devise and or augment strategies to achieve the desirable outcomes. SEI’s SR5 performance measurement
system stands for Scorecards, ROIs (key Responsibilities, Objectives and Indicators) and Five
Fifteens. Each year, managers and employees at SEI brainstorm together to identify, review and update
measures that represent their department’s key performance indicators. They set a monthly goal for
each measure. These scorecards are then put on the company’s intranet so that everyone has a realtime
access. Sharing scorecards internally helps inform and educate departments on all aspects of
the company’s business and shows how the work of one department affects another. Scorecards help
SEI to identify needs and address them through resources and/or training to help employees achieve
their performance goals.
The ROIs are individual measurable job descriptions and every employee in the company has
an ROI. For example, a key responsibility can be revenue; an objective could be contract revenue,
hardware revenue and billable or time and material; and indicators are the measurable that tell
if the goals have been met. Every employee reviews them with his supervisor/manager on a monthly
basis. The ROI provide periodic feedback to the employees on their performance. It helps SEI
to recognize excellence and also to discern and plan for requisite support and training. All the ROIs
funnel up into the scorecards and they are located on the company’s intranet which is accessible
to all employees.
The last is the Five Fifteens, so called as it takes 5 minutes to read and about 15 minutes to prepare.
The Five Fifteens create a quarterly personal development plan for every employee that articulates the
key objectives, priorities and vision goals that the employee seeks to focus on and achieve in the
next 90 days. A key element of the process is that employees develop the Five Fifteens in engagement
with their supervisors/managers, which is also known as Vision Talk. While reviewing the Five
Fifteens, managers discuss the progress and identify areas where employees need help and inputs/
resources to achieve their goals.
The performance measurement and tracking system helps the employees not only to understand
the working of the company but also to assess how and in what measure the employee is contributing
to advance the core objectives of the company and realize his personal, professional and financial goals
as well. Personal goals align with team goals that funnel into departmental goals which in turn feed
the four organizational objectives.
268 South Asian Journal of Business and Management Cases 4(2)
SEI Culture
Culture of Inspiration, Development and Innovation
SEI leadership team intentionally creates and maintains an inspiring organizational culture conducive
for employee development and innovation by sharing company stories and narratives. The senior
team continually provides inspiration to maintain and sustain the culture by listening to their employees
and staying engaged. As Jessi Sprotte, SEI Marketing and Lead Generation Specialist, puts it: ‘and
so when I think about our leadership team it’s continuous, ongoing motivation, momentum, energy,
encouragement, high five’s in the hallway’.
SEI leadership strives to retain and maintain the company culture by methodically socializing new
hires into the ‘SEI Way’ of behaving and conducting business. Following the rigorous hiring process,
new employees are strategically inculcated into the SEI Way by (1) new employee on-boarding strategies,
(2) formal SEI Way Training and (3) sharing stories and narratives. When new hires join the company,
during their first week they are ‘on-boarded’ where majority of their time is spent on the big
picture. They visit and meet with every department to see what they do, and how it all fits in, and everyone
works together. This also sets the stage for future team work. From day one, the new recruits are
firmly engaged and senior leadership sows the seed for lifelong development at SEI.
SEI also conducts official training sessions known as the SEI Way training for new employees, which
is always led by the Executive Leadership Team (Ron Alvesteffer, Dwight Strayer, Kraig Harper and
Mark Thomas). After 6 months with the company, new hires from across the country attend the SEI Way
training session at corporate head office. The emphasis is on the history of SEI followed by the narratives
about SEI culture and employee engagement. The company inspires the employees through narratives,
stories, blogs and even an eBook called ‘The SEI Way’ (http://www.seiservice.com/the-sei-waybook.
php) which captures the organization’s philosophy of how it operates. The eBook has impacted
not only employees but also potential employees, customers and even competitors. SEI also deploys
social network called Yammer to bridge the geographic divide between employees, who may otherwise
never communicate with each other, to share kudos, give kudos, organize volunteer initiatives and share
photos of their teams and even their families.
Culture of Caring and Serving
Senior leaders come with the mindset of serving; they care deeply about employee development and
to serve and solve customer’s problems. SEI employees actively seek out what customers need, solve
their problems and aggressively close deals in the best interest of the customers. Great customer service
is a passion of all the employees, Bill Smitley, SEI Corporate Recruiter, puts this approach as follows:
‘our employees are engaged to where they want to help our customers and not just doing a job.
We actually believe we’re changing lives. We’re helping people.’
Culture of Employee Engagement
SEI believes that an engaged workforce is a productive workforce and accordingly have implemented
various strategies to deepen employee engagement. For example, they encourage professional collaboration
by leveraging on each other’s core strengths (use of Gallop’s Strength Finders), and have
Chen and Manning 269
purposeful and deliberate communication strategies. The employee turnover rate has fallen from the
high of 20 per cent to an average of about 10 per cent (refer to Appendix A). SEI supports and
encourages employee professional development and takes the position that by making oneself better
one will become more productive and efficient and the company will stand to benefit. This is very
concisely articulated by Bill Smitley, SEI Corporate Recruiter, as:
They’re asking can you make yourself better, because if you can make yourself better your job will get better.
Your production will get better. But to make yourself individually better, personally better, professionally better,
to me everything else is behind that and once you’ve achieved that the company…will reap the benefits.
All leaders in SEI have an employee engagement budget that allows them to take individuals out to lunch
and host department, office or regional social events. SEI also provides paid time off for employees who
want to volunteer for community activity. It not only meets many of the needs of the employees to serve
the community but also tells the communities that SEI cares and appreciates their support.
Assessing the SEI Culture
To shed further insight into SEI’s culture, an assessment instrument, such as, the Organizational Culture
Assessment Instrument (OCAI) may be used to conceptually evaluate SEI’s cultural profile (Cameron
& Quinn, 2011). The OCAI assesses six organizational dimensions: (1) dominant characteristics,
(2) organizational leadership, (3) management of employees, (4) organization glue, (5) strategic emphases
and (6) criteria of success. Each dimension has four alternatives called competing values that
correspond with the four distinct types of organizational culture termed by Cameron and Quinn (2011)
as: ‘clan, hierarchy, market, and adhocracy’. Organization with a clan and hierarchy culture have an
internal focus—clan culture tends to be more flexible and people centric (e.g., employees and customers),
whereas hierarchy culture seek stability and control. On the other end of the spectrum, adhocracy and
market culture have an external focus—adhocracy culture promotes both flexibility and individuality,
whereas market culture values rapid response to competitive positioning.
These four competing values can be mapped on two axes: (1) internal focus and integration versus
external focus and differentiation and (2) stability and control versus flexibility and discretion. Every
organization has its own specific combination of these four types of organization cultures which can be
plotted on a competing values framework with the four quadrants corresponding to the four culture
types. Based on extensive interviews and interaction with about 5 per cent of the employees including
the President, VPs, and employees at various levels performing diverse functions and the Founder
performing a culture assessment of SEI was attempted by the author using Organizational Culture Index
(OCI). The result of the assessment is depicted in Figure 2.
The diamond-shaped plot (tilting towards the upper/left quadrant) shows that SEI has crafted a highly
‘Clan’-oriented culture. This type of culture is best suited for knowledge-based service organizations—
who have to deal with discerning customers in the IT industry. In clan culture, knowledge, responsiveness
and a positive attitude of the employees are the most valuable firm assets; unlike those needed in a
manufacturing organization where capital assets or in a banking organization where market aspects are
more important.
This profile also confirms SEI’s concern for people and sensitivity for customers. The ‘hierarchy’
category scored higher than both adhocracy and market categories, which reflects the SEI’s adherence
to processes and procedures which have been necessitated owing to its dispersal over 24 branches in
270 South Asian Journal of Business and Management Cases 4(2)
12 states. Given the nature of SEI’s market focus (commoditized service business), its tendency towards
market orientation is limited. The adhocracy or the culture of innovation or entrepreneurship is rather
low in SEI where new ideas or change are mostly top-down, although a few bright new ideas originating
from employees have been adopted.
This aspect seems relevant in the emerging technological game-changing challenge that ‘cloud
computing’ would pose to SEI in the time to come. The new ‘cloud computing’ entrant might offer to
small- and mid-sized data centres, the majority of SEI customers, a new technological option for expansion
and modernization without the need to maintain large data storage infrastructure. This could possibly
reduce SEI’s potential to expand and grow as per their projections. Innovation could possibly provide
a way out. It is important to bear in mind that the basic purpose of the OCAI is a tool to map the current
culture position with the view of providing guidance to a future (preferred) culture position—there is
no ‘best’ culture profile.
Figure 2. OCAI for SEI
Source: Adapted from Cameron and Quinn (2011).
Chen and Manning 271
Links between Culture and Performance (Profits)
Over the decade preceding 2012, SEI averaged an18 per cent sales growth rate (refer to Appendix B),
gross profit of 80 per cent due in part to the reduction in inventory and in Contract Cost of Goods
(COGS). SEI has a 98 per cent customer retention rate and over 90 per cent net promoter score, which
equals or betters the best in the industry. Throughout this period SEI managed to maintain an EBITDA
(earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization), higher than the revenue growth. This is
significant in that SEI has grown the top line without compromising the bottom line.
SEI has been a proud awardee of ‘101 Best ; Brightest Companies to work for’ in West Michigan,
Atlanta, Metro Detroit, Chicago area each year since 2005; The Alfred P. Sloan Award for Business
Excellence in Workplace Flexibility (3-year recipient); and Inc. 5000 list of America’s fastest growing
private companies. SEI attributes the key to their success to the employee centric culture. In fact, Kraig
Harper, CFO, asserts that although he cannot prove it, but he firmly believes that over time there is
a positive connection between their company culture and financial returns:
I’m very comfortable that the things that we’re doing from a culture perspective and the focus on culture first…
rather than on profits first…is really going to lead to our continued success. And it really leads to us being able
to help our employees accomplish their goals, which again is our vision…so it continues to wrap around our
vision, our four core objectives and it starts with our culture.
SEI leadership continues to seek new opportunities to provide grist for employees’ growth. They have
recently set a target of doubling the company’s revenue—100 million dollars by year 2020 which is
driven primarily by the need to fulfil the goals (financial) set by the employees and not the other way
around. In the words of SEI President:
So our goals for growth in the future are our BHAG as Jim Collins would call it—our big hairy audacious goal
is to get to a hundred million dollars in revenue by 2020…. The reason that’s important is we’ve surrounded
ourselves with these growth-driven oriented people who want to serve and who want opportunities, so in order
to give them the opportunities and help them hit their vision goals we need to continue to grow as a company.
Conclusion
Ron began to reflect on some of the concerns raised by his senior leadership team. Can SEI recruit
candidates with the cultural fit fast enough to fuel the growth? From the sales side, as the territory
spread out farther and farther, how would SEI manage the process without diluting the culture? The
current employee turnover rate is stubbornly stuck at about 10 per cent per year, would the explosive
growth increase employee turnover? From the financial perspective, if the growth could not be fuelled
organically, will SEI consider external funding?
As Ron looked back at his tenure of 15 years at SEI and the journey he had traversed to establish the
culture of servant leadership, he could not help but notice that it had not been easy to maintain and raise
the culture bar; for whenever they had lowered the bar the outcome had been disastrous. Admittedly,
oftentimes practice fatigue had set in and they had to be extra vigilant and careful to guard against it. Ron
realized that this meeting with Mike had far reaching implications. It was really about all the 250
employees at SEI that looked to him for leadership and support in helping them to continue to actualize
the organizational culture of serving embodied in the shared vision.
Source: From Kraig Harper, CFO, SEI.
Source: From Kraig Harper, CFO, SEI.
Appendix A: Employee Turnover
Appendix B: Revenue and Employee Growth ; Geographic Expansion
Chen and Manning 273
Note
1. All direct quotes by SEI employees cited in this study are sourced from the interviews the authors conducted
during their site visits to Service Express, Inc. in spring/summer of 2013. The interviews were all conducted in
Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA.
References
Cameron, K.S., ; Quinn, R.E. (2011). Diagnosing and changing organizational culture (3rd ed.). San Francisco,
CA: Jossey-Bass.
Collins, J.C, ; Porras, J.I. (2002). Built to last. New York, NY: Harper Collins Publishers Inc.
Authors’ Bio-sketch
Basil K.C. Chen is Professor of Accounting and Finance at the School of Business, Centennial College,
Toronto, Canada. His research interests include positive organization identity; positive organization
scholarship; virtuous organizational practices; value-based leadership; and performance measurements.
He received his Ph.D. in Values Driven Leadership from Benedictine University. He is also a Chartered
Professional Accountant (CPA) and an alumnus of Wilfrid Laurier University where he completed
his graduate degree in business (MBA). Prior to his appointment at Centennial College, he held leadership
and management position with both private and public companies that encompass controllership,
market management and operations.
Michael R. Manning is Professor of Leadership, Strategy & Change at the Center for Values Driven
Leadership, Benedictine University, Lisle, IL, USA. He currently serves as an associate editor of the
Journal of Applied Behavioral Science and is active in the Academy of Management, where he is a
former Chair of the Organization Development and Change Division. His research interests include
topics related to the management of change (whole systems change using large group interventions, the
role of affect and emotion in change, identifying change moments); leading and collective action;
occupational stress and well-being.