Questioning Theories

This week's readings were on "How to Motivate Your Problem People" and "the Tools of Cooperation and Change." “Culture is a pattern of shared assumptions that was learned by a group as it solved its problems of external adaptation and internal integration, that has worked well enough ….to be taught … as the correct way to perceive, think and feel in relation to those problems.” This is a quote from "The Tools of Cooperation and Change". According to the author, corporate culture is created as a result of the repeated use of successful approaches to a problem. I had instead assumed the opposite - that vision and culture molded the problem solving approaches taken. Here is the definition of the Google Culture: “.. we still maintain a small company feel. Our commitment to innovation depends on everyone being comfortable sharing ideas and opinions. Every employee is a hands-on contributor, and everyone wears several hats. Because we believe that each Googler is an equally important part of our success, no one hesitates to pose questions directly to Larry or Sergey in our weekly all-hands (“TGIF”) meetings.” Based on this nugget, wouldn't one think that companies first determine a vision, and a culture, and that in turn influences the problem solving approaches chosen. 2) “Behind most cynics is a frustrated idealist,” “a paradigm shift” or “walk in the other’s shoes” seems to summarize Nicholson’s approach in "How to Motivate Your Problem People". While his suggestions are theoretically good, I wonder if they can be executed with success given the human element involved? For instance, how often have members in a family been able to resolve new or existing issues with siblings or parents, if they've had a tenuous relationship to begin with? I doubt a work situation can be any easier. Nicholson even suggests that bosses ask around to get insights into any personal matters that may be affecting an employees work habits. Errr..How much trust would be left if an employee were to discover that their boss had been asking questions about their personal issues, from co-workers? I'd love to read actual case studies about situations where these author's recommended theories were used successfully. Any thoughts, folks ?