Holistic Organizational Development
Organizational Diagnostic – self adminstered – Go to the BIR/ OD tools micro site
What is Holistic Organizational Development?
Holistic Organizational Development is development activity looking at the whole organization, systems, people culture etc.
It looks at people and how they interact with the organization to deliver is products and services.
Holistic Diagnostic approaches include everyone in the organization – top down, as well as explore the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of all parts of the organization. This will typically include systems areas such as finance, marketing, operations and IT in addition to the traditional people management aspects.
Traditional Organizational Development
Traditional Organizational Development has been grounded in the behavioral sciences, and while this is still an important factor – we need to understand this in the context of the functions and systems in which people operate. A holistic approach.
“Organization Development is an effort (1) planned, (2) organization-wide, and (3) managed from the top, to (4) increase organization effectiveness and health through (5) planned interventions in the organization’s “processes,” using behavioral-science knowledge”
(Beckhard, “Organization development: Strategies and Models”).
Unfortunatly much organizational development over the years has not met this robust and comprehensive approach. And indeed many practitioners in the areana use this definition to limit there interventions and to stay with a behavioual approach only, often ignoring the context altogether. Many OD interventions appear tactical and politically driven rather than holistic and looking at the needs of the organization.
Indeed there is much movement towards a more holistic approach:
“Organization Development is the attempt to influence the members of an organization to expand their candidness with each other about their views of the organization and their experience in it, and to take greater responsibility for their own actions as organization members. The assumption behind OD is that when people pursue both of these objectives simultaneously, they are likely to discover new ways of working together that they experience as more effective for achieving their own and their shared (organizational) goals. And that when this does not happen, such activity helps them to understand why and to make meaningful choices about what to do in light of this understanding”
(Neilsen, “Becoming an OD Practitioner “)
Explore Holistic Organizational Development
The Business Improvement Review is a tool we have developed to address this very issue of an holistic approach to business improvement and change. You can try a ‘lite’ version of the BIR for free – follow the link above.