Organizational Effectiveness is a concept that demands continuous improvement at all levels in a system. Several methods have been devised and used in this regard all aiming at making the organization more efficient and more competitive. As the rate of activities increase, organizations are likely to become increasingly focused on day to day operational issues thereby becoming less aware of emerging difficulties that will ultimately reduce its effectiveness. One is also likely to miss the important effects that known problems are likely to have on the rest of the rest of the organization. Before you know it the organization is in a severe downward spiral.
The point be made is that the organization is a system. Problems in one part of the system that goes undetected will grow and spread to impact other parts of the organization. It is important therefore that the problems are detected, analyzed and subjected to carefully planned interventions. Organization Development (OD) offers an opportunity to do just that.
Organization Development is a “planned organization-wide programme” (Schein) that focuses on aspects of organizational dynamics. It involves activities which the consultant facilities with individuals and groups.
These activities emerge from a diagnostic process that identifies problems, their causes and variables that must be controlled in order to achieve satisfactory solutions.
In the early days a typical definition of OD would emphasize the point that it uses “Behavioural Science” to find solutions to organizational problem. This is because the OD process involves organizational members at all stages, namely a) the “front end” (diagnostic stage), b) the design, development and implementation of strategies, c) mentoring and evaluation and feedback. Naturally, skill is working with people is of the utmost importance.
There are several models for carrying out an OD exercise. Most are very comprehensive. Yet they can be learned fairly easily and thereby become available for use in your organization.
The Human Resource Management Association of Jamaica has launched an “OD Cell” that gives members an opportunity to participate in exploration of:
A) What is OD
B) Its application in Jamaican organization
C) Forming network for sharing information and expertise.
You are invited to become an OD enthusiast.
By: Lloyd Stanley