Corporate Anthropology

Corporate anthropology helps sustainable change of organisation cultures

Why do organisations work the way they do? Or why don’t they work the way they should?

Even with 30 years’ experience in various organisations (profit and non-profit), I keep asking myself these questions. This is why I took the Corporate Anthropology training at the Culture Academy in 2017.

In her book On the Brink, Andi Simon describes four areas where anthropology really works:

  • Anthropology can be used to diagnose and change a company’s culture.
  • Anthropology can help rethink and communicate a corporate strategy.
  • Anthropological methods can be used in concept development, product design, and new business evaluation.
  • Anthropological methods are valuable to branding, marketing and sales.

Does not every organisation have to deal with these?



Corporate anthropology in my work


The power of corporate anthropology
By looking at the future from an anthropological perspective, you can see what is actually going on in the dynamic of the organisation. You can see what is happening in the undercurrent, and you understand the difference between the organisation as it is planned on paper and in terms of KPIs, strategy, and organisation charts on the one hand, and the organisation that comes across in stories, emotions, mutual relationships, behaviour, et cetera on the other hand. These insights and this knowledge are the sources for actual, sustainable changes in organisation culture.
Corporate anthropology in my work
As an interim manager or project manager I get absorbed in an organisation and make myself familiar with matters quickly. Somebody called this ‘integratability’ once, a characteristic that comes in handy for an interim professional. I opted for the corporate anthropology training as it gives me a framework that allows me to observe even better and to interpret things more adequately, using this as a basis to work towards change.
Recommended bibliography

  • De Corporate Tribe, 4th edition May 2016, Danielle Braun and Jitske Kramer, founders of the Academie voor Organisatiecultuur. For sale at Managementboek, for instance.


  • On the Brink, 2016, Andi Simon. For sale at Amazon.   




  • Viral Change, 2nd edition 2008, Leandro Herrero.
    For sale at Amazon.

Do you want to know more about corporate anthropology?

I would be pleased to explain to you how corporate anthropology can add value to your organisation.