Organisational Development- Action Research Model

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Question 1- Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the entry phase. What would you have done differently? Today’s organisation operates in a rapidly changing environment therefore the organization has to change to suit the needs of the environment in order to remain competitive. The field of Organization Development is focused on improving the effectiveness of organizations and the people in those organizations. It is a strong set of concepts and techniques for improving organizational effectiveness and individual well being "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). The planned change process begins when one or more mangers notice an opportunity for change in their organization, department or group through organizational development. The organization may be successful however their maybe some room for improvement because of the dynamic external environmental conditions it may be facing that can change how the organization operates. The first activity involved in dealing with change is entering and contracting. The entry phase is where a relationship between a client and the OD practitioner is formed as well as defining the organization’s opportunities for development. It is said to be one of the most important phases as it sets the foundation for the rest of the process and is usually and indicates how the rest of the project will go. It involves clarifying the issue, determining who the relevant client is and how both of them will accomplish the issues outlined. Assuming that mutual expectations of the consultant and the client in the entry phase progressed satisfactorily, contracting then takes place. In contracting both parties have to lay their expectations on the table, discuss the time and resources that would be

allotted and establish ground rules under which the parties will operate. In order for the project to run smoothly these steps need to be carried out properly to ensure success. The entry phase of First National Bank was examined in detailed and it was discovered that there were several strengths and weaknesses of the process which will now be discussed.

In order to enter into a contract a member of the organization has to contact an OD practitioner and talk about a problem to address. In this case the executive vice president of First National Bank spoke to the OD consultant after the convention to explore the possibility of hiring him to carry out a change program for his organization. By selecting an external OD practitioner this would allow him to enter into this process without any pre conceived notion about the company, external consultants have a wide range of expertise and experience because they are exposed to a number of jobs also there is usually a greater level of trust between the parties when it comes to dealing with confidentiality of information. In the entry phase both parties explore the likelihood of working together, in this case the OD practitioner and the executive vice president spoke to each other for about an hour where they established that four issues needs to be addressed, these were: (1) the three owners were not an effective team and had strained relations; (2) he wanted to improve employee morale, motivation and productivity;(3) he wanted the bank to be a fun and enjoyable place to work and not so oppressive and (4) he wanted to develop a process for managing a bank so he and his partners could acquire other banks. It was a strength that the vice president could put all the problems the bank had on the table so that the OD consultant knew what the issues at hand were and what he was dealing with. Because he was able to do this it is evident that he was aware that there were problems in the organisation that had to be dealt with in order...
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