Organizational Development

Topics: Management, Culture, Customer service Pages: 10 (3613 words) Published: February 26, 2013

Organization Development is a long-term effort led and managed from the top, to improve the organizations effectiveness’ and increase health through planned interventions. Through an ongoing and collaborative management, organization development will improve upon organizations visioning, empowerment, learning and problem-solving processes. Organization development can enhance organization performance and individual development through change and growth. The environment and the needs of organizations are changing dramatically. The organizations’ objective is to change the values, beliefs, attitudes and structure so it can adapt to the fast-changing external environment of new markets, regulations, challenges and technologies. Because of this rapidly changing environment, one of the most important assets for an organization is their ability to manage change and to keep people healthy. Each organization is a complex system of systems which exist within a larger system - each of which have their own characteristics. Organization interventions within these systems are approaches to strategic planning, organization design, leadership development, change management, performance management, coaching, diversity, and work/life balance. Organization Development is the long range effort to solve the problems in the workplace and to improve an organizations’ effectiveness. Change is brought on by the pressures and demands an organization is trying to cope with In our current society, companies must be constantly evolving in order to achieve success and remain successful. The world changes quickly and organizations must adapt to these changes if they wish to survive. Organization development represents how these organizations must respond to these changes. Companies seeking to develop change must understand the current social, political and economic climate and respond accordingly. Organizations should always be looking for ways to continuously improve and become better. In order to realize these improvements, companies must recognize the need for change and look for a way to establish a change strategy. Finding the correct approach represents one of the most difficult tasks for a company. The company needs to understand why the change is necessary and translate that message to its entire organization. This can bring about many challenges that must also be understood and dealt with.

In order to fully comprehend the theory of organization development, we should examine a real-world example of OD that brought about real cultural changes within an organization. Bull Information Systems is a branch of a major computer company, Groupe Bull, which sought to establish a sincere culture change within its organization. The company was a well-respected computer company that prided itself on its technical expertise and its technological advances. However, in the late 1980s, higher management had understood that while the company possessed technological strengths, it had also developed certain weaknesses. These weaknesses pertained mostly to customer relations and customer satisfaction. Most employees were well trained technically and understood their tasks pertaining to the production and manufacturing of computers. However, the staff at Bull did not possess strong customer relations skills and was viewed as overly task-focused. This meant that while the workers could easily repair or assemble computer parts, they could not pull together as a team and focus on other aspects of their jobs. Lower-level management had never properly established a system that would not only focus on results but also emphasize the importance of the process needed to obtain those results. Their employees had therefore always been trained to focus solely on results. They were basically treated as if they were machine parts that were essential to completing...

References: Richard, A, Thatcher, J. (1995). Achieving Cultural Change: A practical case study. Leadership and Organization Development Journal; 16, 2; ABI/INFORM Global pg. 16.
Miles, M. Classis Theories – Contemporary Applications: A comparative study of the implementation of innovation in Canadian and Chinese Public Sector environments. School of Management, University of Ottawa. 1 – 20.
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