Cultural Audits by the Maccoby Group

A cultural audit involves the study and examination of an organization’s cultural characteristics (such as its assumptions, norms, values, relationships, leadership style, communication practices, recruitment and evaluation practices, measurements) to determine whether they hinder or support its purpose.

The Maccoby Group conducts cultural audits by combining approaches of cultural anthropology and organizational development.

Cultural anthropology examines an organizational culture through diachronic and synchronic lenses. The diachronic explores how and why a culture developed in the past. The synchronic studies how well this culture is adapted to the present and future challenges. Has the organization’s purpose changed in order to adapt to a changing environment? Which elements of the culture are adaptive and which are impeding the organization’s ability to achieve its purpose?

On the basis of interviews, we develop a gap survey that elicits gaps between the elements considered most important for the organization’s success and current practice. Together with the organization’s leadership we facilitate meetings to determine the meanings of the gaps and the changes needed to close the gaps.

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