Organizational development programs provide employee training to enhance organizational operations and help workers expand their skills so that they may be of greater profit to the company. Organizational development is significant in meeting established goals, and for progress and gaining market share.
Even for organizations not focused on financial goals, like non-profits, organizational development can raise the organization’s reach and help it do better in the community or help more people.
Below are some characteristics of a successful organizational development program
- Training Aligned To Goals – The base of any successful organizational development program is to make sure that the training is steady with the organization’s aim, vision, and goals. Growth and development won’t meet objectives without this arrangement.
- Leadership Commitment – Organizational development begins at the top. If the leadership is not committed, they shouldn’t expect their employees to be committed either. Development programs will help leadership get on board so they can support the process as it moves through the rest of the organization.
- Communication Effectiveness – The ability to communicate the principles and skills needed to reach organizational goals is necessary and no one should be left out of the communication process. All communications whether verbal, visual or written, are important and should be consistent, clear, and targeted to different positions and departments so that everyone knows where they fit and how does their participation help in the development of the organization.
- High Quality Of Training And Coaching – Organizational development will only be as good as the coaching and training employees get, so an extremely good quality of training and coaching is necessary in order to move an organization further in significant ways. Many training programs are dull and ineffective at teaching people how to improve and develop their skills. If you want the initiative to succeed, make sure you have high quality training in place.
- Taking A Long-Term View – Most organizations have short and long-term goals. Focusing only on short-term goals doesn’t give organizations the chance they need to develop over time. Meeting short-term goals is one step in the process but taking a longer view will be more absolute and lead to more growth over time.
Organizational development programs are a sure way to get a boost in one’s career.
Organizational change is challenging but fulfilling. It gives you a chance to make a difference in your company and in other people’s lives. Getting a certificate can also help you earn more income and open up new career opportunities. Whether you are interested in making a career change or you want to add to your qualifications, the following programs can help you do just that.
Organizational development programs usually share several basic characteristics. They are considered long-term efforts usually of one to three years. In addition, organizational development lays stress on collaborative management, where managers and workers at different positions cooperate to solve problems. It also recognizes that every organization is different and that the same solutions can’t necessarily be applied at all companies.
Another common factor of organizational development program is an emphasis on the value of teamwork and small groups. Most organizational development systems implement wide organizational changes and overcome resistance largely through the efforts of small teams and/or individuals.
An integral feature of most organizational development programs is the change agent, which is the group or individual that facilitates the process. Change agents are usually outside consultants who have experience managing these programs, although companies sometimes utilize inside managers. The benefit of appointing outside consultants is that they provide a different outlook and do not have a one – sided view of the organization’s problems and needs.
The drawback of outside change agents is that they usually lack an understanding of key issues particular to the organization. In addition, outside consultants may have trouble securing the trust and cooperation of the members in the organization. Due to this some companies apply an exterior and interior approach, which combines the advantages of both change agents.
Implementing Organizational Development Programs
Organizational development programs comprise of two groups of activities; “action research” and “interventions. Action research is a process of collecting data of an organization, feeding it back for action planning, and calculating results by collecting more data. Action research can be seen as the distinguishing element of the organizational development process, where the change agent uses actions plans to make changes. The results of actions are measured and evaluated, and new action plans are devised to effect new changes.
Organizational development interventions are programs that comprise of specific activities designed to effect change in some phase of an organization. Organizations that wish to achieve organizational change will employ a full range of interventions. One easy method of classifying these interventions is by group size and interrelationship, typically an organizational development program will integrate more than one of these interventions.
A few of the more popular interventions are briefly described below –
- Interpersonal – Interpersonal interventions in an organizational development program designed to enhance individual skills, knowledge, and effectiveness. One of the most popular interventions are T-groups, which help workers become more aware of their own and their coworker’s behavior patterns. A typical T-group consists of 10 to 20 volunteers who meet at a certain time. The result of this meeting would be that the team would become more proficient because of greater understanding and subsequent efforts to improve.
- Group – Organizational development group interventions are designed to help teams and groups within organizations become more effective. Group diagnostic interventions are simply meetings wherein members of a team analyze their performance, ask questions about what they need to improve, and discuss potential solutions to problems. The advantage of group interventions is that members often communicate problems that their fellow workers were unaware of. As a result, many problems are resolved simply as a result of the meetings. Team-building meetings are same as diagnostic interventions, but they involve taking the group away from the workplace for some time. The group members go further than just realizing problems by suggesting, discussing, and offering solutions.
- Intergroup – Intergroup interventions are combined into organizational development programs to create cooperation between various groups within an organization. For example, interaction between different departments often deteriorates in larger organizations due to battle for limited resources. Conflict resolution meetings are held, and group leaders are brought together to realize their responsibility to the intervention. The teams meet separately to make a list of their feelings about the other groups. Then the groups meet and share their lists. Finally, the teams meet to discuss the problems and to try to find solutions that will help both parties. This type of intervention helps to slowly diffuse tension between groups, caused by lack of communication and misunderstanding.
- Comprehensive – Organizational development comprehensive interventions are used to create change in an organization. Survey feedback is a popular comprehensive intervention. This technique basically involves surveying employee attitudes at all levels and then reporting the findings back to them. The employees then use the data in feedback sessions to create solutions to perceived problems. A number of surveys have been developed specifically for such interventions. An advantage of change interventions is that companies can often realize a quick and very important effect as a result of minor changes.
- Appreciative Inquiry – This approach centers around examining organizational practices that have proven successful as a way of addressing development issues. Traditional approaches focused too much on seeking problems and looking for new solutions, whereas many organizations have numerous successes or strengths that might hold a better key to an organization’s development. Appreciative inquiry lays stress on discovering and identifying present strengths and anticipating a positive future building on those strengths. It calls for employees to recap their best experiences in the organization and imagine new prospects.
Organizational development programs are designed to solve a problem, thus facilitating an organization to achieve the goal. These are designed to improve the organization’s functioning and empower managers and leaders to better manage their team and organization. These programs are required to address the issues that an organization might be facing ranging from process, performance, knowledge, skill, will, technology, evaluation, career development, abrasion, top talent retention and the list can actually be far- reaching.