The Competing Values Framework of Quinn, Rohrbaugh
is a theory that
was developed initially from research conducted on the major indicators of
effective organizations. Based on statistical analyses of a
comprehensive list of effectiveness indicators, Quinn and Rohrbaugh
(1983) discovered two major dimensions underlying conceptions of
The first dimension is related to organizational focus,
from an internal emphasis on the well-being and
development of people in the organization to an external focus on the
well-being and development of the organization itself.
dimension differentiates organizational preference for structure and
represents the contrast between stability and control and flexibility
and change. Together the two dimensions
form four quadrants.
The Competing Values Framework got its name because the criteria within
the four models at first seem to carry conflicting messages.
Organizations must be adaptable and flexible, but we also want them to
be stable and controlled at the same time. A paradox.
Each quadrant of the framework represents
one of four major models of organization and management theory
1. Human Relations Model: places a
great deal on emphasis on flexibility and internal focus, and stresses
cohesion, morale, and human resources development as criteria for
Open Systems Model emphasizes
flexibility and external focus, and stresses readiness, growth, resource
acquisition and external support.
Rational Goal Model: emphasizes
control and an external focus, and views planning, goal setting,
productivity and efficiency as effective.
Internal Process Model:
emphasizes control and an internal focus, and stresses the role of
information management, communication, stability and control.
Another variant of the Competing
Values Framework deals with leadership.
Quinn uses his competing
values framework of organizational effectiveness to organize the
literature on leadership. Eight categories of leader behavior, or roles,
emerge from his review of the literature. The figure on the left plots
these eight roles onto the existing framework.
The resulting model of
leadership was derived theoretically and represents "a hypothetical
rather than an empirical statement about the perceptual understructure
Quinn argues that more effective
managers have the ability to play multiple, even competing leadership
are expected to play all of these roles and to simultaneously consider
and balance the competing demands that are represented by each set of
The competing value framework can be
used in organizational context. It can be used as a strategic tool to
develop supervision and management programs. It can also be used to help
organizations diagnose their existing and desired cultures. Furthermore,
it can be seen a tool to examine organizational gaps. Another function
might be to use it as a teaching tool for practicing managers or to help
interpret and understand various organizational functions and processes.
Another application is to help organizational members better understand
the similarities and differences of managerial leadership roles.
Compare with Competing Values Framework:
Path-Goal Theory | Theory X Theory Y
| Expectancy Theory
| Herzberg Two Factor
Results-Based Leadership |
More management models