Organizational Development & Organizational Effectiveness

OD Culture and needs assessment

What is Organizational Development?

Organization Development (OD) is a complex strategy intended to change the beliefs, attitudes, values, culture and structure of organizations so that they can better adapt to new technologies, markets, and challenges. Organizational Development methods are employed to improve Organizational Effectiveness (OE).

Performance improvement is a key reason for implementing organizational development tools and methods.

Or in simple terms a systematic approach which enables a company to implement improvements in a consistent way.

The key to an effective implementation to to know where you are before you start – that is what the RapidBI Business Improvement Review (BIR) is there to do.

What is Organization Development?

The are many definitions for organizational development or organizational effectiveness. To set the scene here are a few well know definitions:
From Wikipedia:
Organization development is a system-wide application of behavioural science knowledge to the planned development and reinforcement of organizational strategies, structures, and processes for improving an organization’s effectiveness. (Cummings and Worley, “Organization Development and Change”, Sixth Edition, South-Western Publishing, 1997, p.2.)

Organization development, according to Richard Beckhard, is defined as:

1. A planned effort…
2. organization-wide…
3. managed from the top…
4. to increase organization effectiveness and health…
5. through planned interventions in the organization’s ‘processes’, using behavioural science knowledge.

According to Warren Bennis, organization development (OD) is a complex strategy intended to change the beliefs, attitudes, values, and structure of organizations so that they can better adapt to new technologies, markets, and challenges.

Warner Burke emphasizes that OD is not just “anything done to better an organization”; it is a particular kind of change process designed to bring about a particular kind of end result. OD involves organizational reflection, system improvement, planning, and self-analysis.

In other words is it is the planned change to a company to enable growth (or change) in an effective way
Relative to consulting. Human Resources, OD & Training means:

  • Consulting with businesses or departments to improve effectiveness; specifically, assessing exact needs, developing and implementing strategic planned change efforts to link goals, skills and processes to the overall mission, vision and strategy
  • The client and consultant (internal or external) work together to gather data (via structured methods), define issues and determine a suitable course of action. The business (or department) is assessed to create an understanding of the current situation and to identify opportunities for change that will meet business objectives
  • OD differs from traditional consulting because client involvement is encouraged throughout the entire process. The ways in which people communicate and work together are addressed in addition to technical or procedural issues that need resolution
  • Empowering individuals and teams by using valid and reliable research to create, manage and embrace efficient and effective change
  • Developing managers and staff to create the desired culture across all levels of the organisation

 

Is OD/ OE the same as training?

No, the two fields compliment each other. OD/ OE involves analyzing 3 areas of an organization: its people, its processes, and its planning. Training on the other hand, typically only involves the people component. Training people will not solve every issue. Sometimes the issue requires a change in the process, and/or further strategic planning efforts.

Business Improvement Review (BIR)

Using the Business Improvement Review or any holistic OD diagnostic can help consultants (internal or external) make diagnoses that will help clients in their planning and decision making.
RapidBI Products and services help you and your managers (or clients) direct organizational change by identifying:

  • The strengths and weaknesses (SWOT) of the organization as a whole
  • The future needs of the organization
  • The gap between the two and the required action plan
  • The culture of the organization (current and required)

And

  • The strengths and weaknesses in the current competencies of the key people in your organization,
  • The future competencies needed by the organization, and
  • The gap between the two.

Once you’ve identified specific gaps, you can design special programs to meet your needs. These needs must be identified in the context of the current organizational culture and the culture desired in the future. Failure to take account of culture is often the cause of failure in organizational change.

What makes a good Organizational Development (OD) diagnostic tool?

Many OD tools focus on the people and the roles they undertake. This is ok but limits the success of the project. With any successful OD project we must look not only at the people but at the systems and culture within they operate. This means understanding at some level:

  • The mission/ goals of the organization
  • The value of the organization
  • The current management style
  • Current and desired organizational culture

 

Diagnosing Organizational Development Needs:

The process that we advocate is based upon over eight years of field research.
1. Plan to plan
2. Decide on the need
3. Agree goals & brief
4. Gather senior mgt data
5. Gather staff data
6. Collate
7. Feedback set priorities
8. Action plan
9. Implement & review

This is the process which surrounds the Business Improvement Review (BIR) when implemented fully.

The main data collection process we use is the PRIMO-F model. This collects hard and soft data against:

People
Resources
Innovation & Ideas
Marketing
Operations
Finance

Our research has found that looking at people, their roles and skills without taking into account the culture, management style and objectives of the organization leads to solutions which are seldom fully implemented and rarely add value. Using the holistic approach of the PRIMO-F model has demonstrated added value and successful change time and time again.

One added advantage we have found when used by HR consultants (internal or external) is that because the process is strategically driven with out bias for change to people, structure or process (at the outset) that the HR functions enjoys the association with a strategic change process because it links to all parts of the organization at a high level.

Within the BIR we also use SWOT, Training Needs analyses and a range of other proven methods.

Keywords

Organizational development, organizational change, OD tools, Organizational Effectiveness, OE


Management and Leadership development are importent to you and of course to the team here at RapidBI. We hope you find this information valuable, if you do please tweet or facebook like this page. Thanks

Check Out Mike Morrison's Book on Organizational Development – Theory and Practice, for tools and tips on developing organizations, managers and leaders on Amazon and Kindle

Read more management articles from the team


 

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About Mike Morrison

Mike Morrison is a consultant and change agent specialising in developing skills in senior people to increase organizational performance.
Mike is also founder & director of RapidBI, an organizational effectiveness consultancy.

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