HomeEvents & ResourcesHR BlogsAuthority Culture: How to harmonize it in your 2023 office?

Authority Culture: How to harmonize it in your 2023 office?

The group norms, values, beliefs, and assumptions that are followed within an organization are referred to as organizational culture. It gives the company control and stability. The more stable organization is, the easier its goal is to be comprehended and achieved. Specifically, companies with Authority culture have leaders who are sure of themselves and where they are going. In the HBR study, 4% of companies said they were making decisions from the top to bottom. 

Let’s dive into the Authority culture to understand the Authority Culture and benefits of applying this culture in your organization.

What is Authority Culture?

What is Authority Culture?

Besides the four main types of organisational culture in the Competing Values Framework (Adhocracy culture – Create, Clan Culture – Collaborate, Hierarchy Culture – Control, Market Culture – Compete), there are many other enthralling add-in company cultures.

One of the other add-in company cultures we are mentioning is “Authority Culture”. Specifically, this model is based on authority, with workers who like to take orders and bosses who want to give commands.

Authority culture is an example of bravery, firmness, and strength. It is based on competition. Workplaces become very competitive because everyone wants to stand out, make a name for themselves, and get ahead of the pack.

Strong leadership and control come from leaders who are sure of themselves, in charge and are the glue. People who care more about their success than the success of the organization as a whole like authority culture.

Do you find Authority Culture in your company??

If your company is very organized and everyone does what they are told down to the smallest detail, you might be dealing with a traditional organizational culture. The model uses a top-down organizational structure, so promotions happen from the bottom up and are based on knowledge, just like in the hierarchy model.

To get ahead in the race and move up the corporate ladder as quickly as possible, employees may also agree to work long hours and be ready to take on assignments at the last minute. Just ensure their need to make money for themselves doesn’t come before the company’s ability to make money, as this could increase the risk of fraud and insider trading. Also, an authority culture in an organization often leads to fast growth, opportunities, and success.

Small note:

Adopting an authority culture means making firm decisions, clarifying who’s in charge, and ensuring everyone knows their roles and responsibilities. This is all done to keep the hierarchy and discipline in place. To create an authority culture, you would need to hire very competitive people, give each person incentives and bonuses, and give rewards like promoting the best performers.

Characteristics of Authority Culture

Your company might be building an Authority Culture if:

  • Strong, sure-of-itself people lead it in positions of power.
  • Leaders like it when people are brave, make decisions and take significant steps.
  • You can find strong, confident people at every company level.
  • In its market, the company is very competitive.
  • There is also a sense of competition at work.
  • People’s efforts are significant.
  • Leaders help people reach their own goals.

How does Authority Culture Work in the Business?

How does Authority Culture Work in the Business?

Managers are given the power to do their jobs by their companies. It lets them decide what to do, show orders, and choose how to use resources to get the organization’s desired results. This kind of authority is essential. Their subordinates won’t listen to them if they don’t have this power. Lastly, the business can’t run without this permission.

How power is shared within an organization varies from company to company. For instance, it depends on how the organization is set up. Also, the structure is usually related to the size of the company. Consider the case of small businesses. Most of the time, only a few people have the authority and power to make decisions. In a sole proprietorship, for example, all decisions are made by the owner.

The organization then gets more extensive and more complicated as the business grows. So, one person can’t make decisions. As a result, a big company will give more power to several people in lower positions. As the company grows, more people will need to be given the ability to make decisions.

In a big company, the levels of authority form a hierarchy, and each group has a different level of power. And when a company uses a decentralized structure, lower positions get more power. But the higher level has more energy if you have a centralized system. Top managers make most of the critical decisions, leaving little or none to be made at lower levels.

Why does the Authority Culture Important?

There are different levels of authority. It increases if the employee is higher in a structure with levels. This kind of structure is meant to help the organization work well. And it helps more than just the company. But it’s also good for the workers.

With an authority culture, managers can tell their subordinates what to do to help the organization reach its goals. Everyone can then move in the same direction. The hierarchy also shows associates how they can move up in their careers and what positions they can hold with their current job. Each job needs a different set of skills, and a high level needs a higher level. So, putting together a hierarchy of power lets the company grow by hiring people who are good at managing.

Then the hierarchy is also a way for managers to keep their word. When someone becomes a manager, he has to show that he is good at his job. Or he will be replaced if he doesn’t.

What are the Different Kinds of Authority in a Company?

What are the Different Kinds of Authority in a Company?

There are three different kinds of authorities:

  • Line authority
  • Staff authority
  • Functioning authority

Line authority

It goes up the chain of command and gives legitimacy right away. One example is how a manager treats the people who work for him. He has direct control over them and has the right to give orders and have his subordinates do things. An organization needs to have a leader who can get people to reach the goals and targets that have been set for them.

Staff authority

It doesn’t give anyone the right to rule, but it does provide advice and help to other departments. One example is the fact that the legal department has its authority. The legal manager advises other departments but can’t force them to do what’s best. It is also common in other departments, like human resources, procurement, and technology, where it supports activities in the value chain.

Functioning authority

It lets someone give orders to people outside of his department. For instance, a manager is put in charge of a project. Let’s say he currently works in the research and development department. The company lets him choose the team he thinks will do the best job. So, for example, he asked people in the marketing department to help him understand what customers want. He also got people from the finance department to keep an eye on the project. The staff in the finance department is another excellent example. They might also be able to ask for documents to help them make financial statements.

Huawei: an Example of an Authority Culture

Huawei: an Example of Authority Culture

Let’s view Huawei as an example. The company’s authoritarian work style, known as “the Wolf Culture,” became famous worldwide. The high expectations and pressure from the top management define this workplace. As was already said, Huawei’s work culture is a big reason it has become a global tech giant. Employees are paid well for the long, hard hours they work and the strict rules they follow. The business is doing well and proliferating. So it’s a win for everyone?

Not quite. The “Type A” culture common in some workplaces is similar to the “hierarchy culture” in that it works from the top down. Not all employees like this way of doing things. Huawei’s way of working got the company into a lot of trouble. Selling your soul to the devil has never ended well, has it?


Accepting a culture of authority requires taking decisive action, establishing a transparent chain of command, and communicating expectations to all team members. All of this is carried out to maintain order and discipline. It takes hiring highly competitive individuals, providing each with incentives and bonuses, and rewarding the best performers with promotions to establish a culture of authority.

With the help of traicie, AI-powered HR Technology, we will utilize the intrinsic motivation and value of the NLP method to help your company leaders figure out their own company culture.  

Do you know that traicie’s sourcing tools for recruiters can help the hiring team with culture-based hiring but also improves the strategic, operational value of the recruiting process :

  1. Cost of a job board – Reduce annual spending on job boards
  2. Cost of HR tools – Reduce the cost of surveys and assessment tools
  3. Recruitment costs – Reduce selection costs
  4. Internal mobility – Fill more skilled jobs with internal staff
  5. Time to hire – Reduce the number of days a role goes unfilled
  6. Salary costs – Reduce overall salary costs
  7. Attrition – Reduce the rate of turnover
  8. Recruitment cost – Reduce the general recruitment cost


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