Culture and Management Research from Jennifer Chatman


Management lessons from the pinnacle of human endeavour

image of a snowy mountain

"Jennifer Chatman from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business and her co-authors studied records of more than 60 years of expeditions to the Nepalese Himalayas. It is a rich bank of information — about 40,000 climbers from some 80 countries. Unlike workplace teams, these groups had a clear goal: to reach their summit. They shared one objective and unambiguous measure of failure: the death of a team member.

By parsing this sometimes grim data set and combining it with teamwork experiments, the researchers found that a collective mindset helped diverse teams ignore differences, such as nationality, that were not relevant to their task. But when the collective spirit overrode vital individual differences of, say, experience, the result could be fatal. For example, teams that got into trouble at altitude and assumed that all members had the same expertise as their most knowledgeable climbers sometimes took risks that put lives in jeopardy."

Read the full article about Professor Jennifer Chatman's research on the Financial Times website.

Go Deeper

Take a deep-dive into this topic and gain expert, working knowledge by joining us for the program that inspired it!

Leading Strategy Execution through Culture Program. Award-winning, Paul J. Cortese Distinguished Professor of Management, Dr. Jenny Chatman, guides participants through a two-day intensive culture clinic to unleash the power of your organization and harness culture as a strategy execution tool. Driven by Dr. Chatman's research and consulting focus that has made her a leading international expert with clients across top Fortune 500 companies and global medium-sized firms, participants in this program will learn how to successfully lead and leverage organizational culture to accelerate their organization’s strategic vision.