In discussion with a colleague about how to strategically manage life in an organization, I was drawn into thinking about how cultural institutionalism would motivate a strategy. Most organizations have pretty positive stories to tell about themselves – if they didn’t, they have organizational commitment issues. My advice is simple:
1) Learn what the story is that an organization tells about itself.
2) Tell that story.
This seems trivial, and maybe in a sense it is. But if a university’s story about itself includes a commitment to great teaching, you will not succeed there by disrespecting teaching. You may not have to be a great teacher (i.e., there may be disconnect between an organization’s story and how it rewards its members), but you cannot believe that teaching doesn’t matter.
There is nothing cynical about this.