The four soft S’s however, are hardly feasible. They are difficult to describe since capabilities, values and elements of corporate culture are continuously developing and changing. They are highly determined by the people at work in the organization. Therefore it is much more difficult to plan or to influence the characteristics of the soft elements. Although the soft factors are below the surface, they can have a great impact of the hard Structures, Strategies and Systems of the organization. Description
Effective organizations achieve a fit between these seven elements. This criterion is the origin of the other name of the model: Diagnostic Model for Organizational Effectiveness.
If one element changes then this will affect all the others. For example, a change in HR-systems like internal career plans and management training will have an impact on organizational culture (management style) and thus will affect structures, processes, and finally characteristic competences of the organization. In change processes, many organizations focus their efforts on the hard S’s, Strategy, Structure and Systems. They care less for the soft S’s, Skills, Staff, Style and Shared Values. Peters and Waterman in “In Search of Excellence” commented however, that most successful companies work hard at these soft S’s. The soft factors can make or break a successful change process, since new structures and strategies are difficult to build upon inappropriate