Market Company Culture: What Pros and Cons to your business?

Ngoc Anh Luong
Ngoc Anh Luong
Head of Digital Marketing at traicie - The best AI-powered talent sourcing tool for recruiters
Table of contents

Competition in the workplace can be a primary force behind innovation and employee motivation. With regard to competition-focused company cultures, there is an outstanding type of company culture evolving around market competition and internal development, which we call “Market company culture”. 

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Generally, in this article, we would help you comprehend how Market Company Culture reinforces and encourages competition as well as potentially boosts company innovation to compete with their market rivals.

Let’s dive into the definition of market company culture, and what are the benefits and drawbacks of this Market company culture!

What is Market Company Culture?

In the Competing Values Framework, a Market Company Culture is one of the four main types of organisational culture:

  • Adhocracy culture (Create)
  • Clan culture (Collaborate)
  • Hierarchy culture (Control)
  • Market culture (Compete)

Most organisations have more than one culture, but one corporate culture usually dominates and defines the whole environment.

The term “market culture” comes from the 1960s. It means that a company cares more about its external environment than its internal one.

Market company culture greatly emphasises its relationships with suppliers, customers, and creditors. These relationships are seen as a sign of how competitive and profitable a company is.

Businesses that are the typical example of using market company culture: General Electric and Philips Electronics. It is very business-focused and ties success to returns on assets (ROA) and being competitive. Even though it’s good for the shareholders, its focus on making money might not connect with employees who don’t see success in terms of money. With a regard to that point, it could cause a disconnect.

Even if employees define success in terms of money, this model could cause them to be too competitive and do business in a mean way. Also, teamwork and the desire to work together will likely be ignored.

Is your company suitable to apply Market company culture?

More by design than by accident, there are still places where market company culture were winning, making money, and hitting targets and stretch goals are essential.

To build a market company culture, you need to look at how each position in the company connects to success and profit drivers outside the company. Consistency, customer satisfaction, product development, and the like often combine these. Financial incentives and bonuses will also go a long way toward making the workplace more competitive and creating a market-based company culture.

If your companies want to embrace the market culture focusing on the competition with both internal personnel network and outside rivals to foster innovation, healthy growth and competitive ideas with the aim to provide opportunities for employees and better products for customers, Market company culture would be the one for you. The Market company culture is built to boost the advance of the company through competitive efforts.

With the Market company culture, Company leaders in a market culture typically encourage employees to set challenging goals for themselves or their teams and work harder to reach those goals.

Critical characteristics of market company culture


Market company culture puts a lot of emphasis on how competitive the company is with its competitors and with its employees. Internally, too much competition can be problematic because staff need to work better together. Many consulting and law firms are known for having this atmosphere.

For example, General Electric’s former CEO Jack Welch would ask managers to rank their employees from best to worst, and then he would fire the worst 10%. Welch stated that this would not only help the company by keeping only the best workers, but it was also suitable for the people who were fired because it got them out of a place where they were failing.

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The culture of the market company places a lot of importance on performance, results, and accomplishments. Profit and market share are two measures of success. Amazon is a company known for being focused on getting things done. Working Backwards, a book written by two Amazon employees, says that the company uses a method for improving processes called DMAIC, which stands for Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, and Control. The team then chooses a Metric Manager who will look at the results daily to see what can be done to improve things.

Focus on the customer

A company with a strong market company culture makes decisions with the customer in mind. This includes the products, the experience in the store, the experience online, and customer service. It takes a lot of research on customers as the main base which is essential to the company’s success. Let’s use Amazon as an example once more. Amazon’s mission statement is: “To be the most customer-focused company on Earth, where customers can find and learn about anything they might want to buy online and where prices are as low as possible.”

Getting things done

In the market company culture, it’s essential to finish the work. In this culture, staying late or working outside work hours to get things done is often praised and seen as necessary to reach business goals.

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Advantages of a market company culture

No one can deny that the combative nature of market company culture benefits corporate growth and success. Here are just a few of how this approach to corporate culture can pay dividends.

Revenue maximisation

A more considerable income is the natural outcome of a culture that is wholly focused on the needs of the client, the achievement of goals, and the attainment of success.

We succeed in our endeavours; if we don’t, we look into alternative approaches. Employees constantly inspired and prodded to go above and beyond are more likely to produce a higher income than their less inspired counterparts.  US strategy consultants MarketCulture claim that a firm’s level of client obsession directly correlates to its financial success.

Keeps one step ahead of the competition

A company with a market company culture would constantly monitor its industry’s changes and competitors to ensure they remain competitive. In this approach, they may maintain their market share and keep one step ahead of the competition by being responsive to any shifts in the market.

A transparent chain of command

Divisions like sales and marketing share the same market culture. This means that the hierarchical chain of command and decision-making is transparent. Employees will know who they report to, and depending on how much they sell, people may move up or down the ladder.

Talented workers with lofty goals

Team members at an organisation with a market company culture are always thinking about ways to improve their abilities because they are encouraged to go the additional mile and inspired by their leaders.

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Negative aspects of market company culture

Making a dent in the funds

As a significant aspect of market company culture, awareness of and responsiveness to market and industry developments are valued highly. The company will likely have to spend a lot of money on market research to make this happen.


When team members are under constant pressure to produce results quickly, their well-being often takes a back seat to get the job done. This is terrible news for your bottom line because it can lead to incidents of presenteeism and, in the worst circumstances, poor mental health and staff burnout.

Toxic atmospheres

When employees constantly compete with one another, they may resort to dishonest (and thus ineffective) methods of getting the job done. A failure to anticipate this could have devastating effects on your team’s efficiency, effectiveness, and morale. Problems with teamwork and collaboration on crucial tasks are also possible.


Promoting some parts of the market culture within your company can help your employees do their jobs better and help your company get a more significant share of the market. But it would be best to find the right balance between focusing on performance and achievements and building a healthy, supportive organisational culture.

With the help of Traicie, she will analyse the intrinsic motivation and value of the NLP method to help company leaders figure out their own company culture.  


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