Diagnosis of an Organization

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Learning Objectives
Identify system parameters and recognize the symptoms, problems,and causes of organizational ineffectiveness. Recognize the various techniques for gathering information from client systems. Describe the major diagnostic models and techniques used in OD programs. Apply a systematic diagnosis to organizational situations.

Diagnosing Problem Areas---Why Diagnosing?
An organization need to survival or be very successful in the rapid developing socielty, it must have flexibility and ability for rapid transfromation. For example, Downsizing and restructuring are the ways to make an organization more effective, before downsizing and restructuring, the organization must digagnose its departments, to see what problems do they have, then how to solve the problems. The process of examing itself is diagnosis. The identification of problem areas for improvement and problems is an important element in developing a high-performance organization.You must know where you are before you can chart a course for where you want to be.

Organization diagnosis rpovides information that allows a faster-reacting organization to emerge, one that can deal with changing forces.OD practitioners reported that 85% of their projects included a diagnostic phase of some type. If organization change is to be effective, it must be based on a specific diagnosis of the problem.

What Is Diagnosis?
Diagnosis is a systematic approach to understanding and describing the present state of the organization. Diagnosis is a method of analyzing organizational problems and learning new patterns of behavor. It can help organization enhancing the organization’s capacity to assess and change its culture; providing and opportunity for organizational members to learn new things; ensuring that the organization rmains engaged in a process of cuntiuous improvement.

The critical issues in diagnosis include:
1)Simplicity. Keep the data as simple as possible, make people easy to understand the presentation. 2)Visibility. Use visible measures of what happening.
3)Involvement. Make sure every member in the organization participates to the diagnosis. 4)Primary factors. Use an undistorted collection of primary orperating variables in the diagnosis. 5)Measure what is important.

6)Sense of urgency. Must have the sence of urgency for change.

The purpose of the diagnostic phase is to gather information to specify the exact nature of the problem requiring solution, to identify the underlying causal forces, and to provide a basis for selecting effective change strategies and techniques.

The Diagnostic Process

There are 9 steps in the Diagnostic Process.
Step 1 Tentative problem areas identified. At this stage, they know there are must be problems somewhere, but not sure where are the problems, and what cause the problems. Step 2 Collect Data. This stage involves gathering data based on the preliminary problem identidied in the preceding step. Step 3 Analyze Data. These Data are categorized, analyzed and presented to the client in a feedback session. Step 4 Data Feedback.

Step 5 To see if there are enough data available. If data are not enough, collect data again.If data are enough, go to step 6. Step 6 Problem areas identified. At this step, client and practitioner join to diagnose and identify problem.

Step 7 Client target motivated to work on problem. The client’s level of motivation to work on the problem is determined. Step 8 Diagnosis work on problem causes, result is change. This step, target systems or problems are identified, and the change strategy is designed. Step 9 Results Monitored. The results are monitored to determine the degree of change.

The Performance Gap

We can see from the figure above, the desired performance is “where the organization want to be”, the actual performance is “where the organization is now”, the gap between them named performance gap....
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