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AN OVERVIEW OF OD

INTERVENTIONS

MODULE 3
Beckhard defines Organization Development (OD) as "an
effort, planned, organization-wide, and managed from the
top, to increase organization effectiveness and health
through planned interventions in the organization's
processes, using behavioral-science knowledge."

In essence, OD is a planned system of change.


• Planned. OD takes a long-range approach to
improving organizational performance and efficiency.
It avoids the (usual) "quick-fix".

• Organization-wide. OD focuses on the total system.

• Managed from the top. To be effective, OD must


have the support of top-management. They have to
model it, not just espouse it. The OD process also
needs the buy-in and ownership of workers
throughout the organization.
• Increase organization effectiveness and health. OD is
tied to the bottom-line. Its goal is to improve the
organization, to make it more efficient and more
competitive by aligning the organization's systems with
its people.

• Planned interventions. After proper preparation, OD


uses activities called interventions to make system
wide, permanent changes in the organization.

• Using behavioral-science knowledge. OD is a


discipline that combines research and experience to
understanding people, business systems, and their
interactions
• Action Research is a process which serves as a
model for most OD interventions.

• French and Bell describe Action Research as a "process of


systematically collecting research data about an ongoing system
relative to some objective, goal, or need of that system; feeding
these data back into the system; taking actions by altering
selected variables within the system based both on the data and
on hypotheses; and evaluating the results of actions by
collecting more data."
The steps in Action Research
Entry
• This phase consists of marketing, i.e.
finding needs for change within an
organization.
• It is also the time to quickly grasp the
nature of the organization, identify
the appropriate decision maker, and
build a trusting relationship.
Start-up and Contracting
• In this step, we identify critical success
factors and the real issues, link into the
organization's culture and processes, and
clarify roles for the consultant(s) and
employees.
• This is also the time to deal with
resistance within the organization. A
formal or informal contract will define
the change process.
Assessment and diagnosis
Here we collect data in order to find the
opportunities and problems in the
organization .For suggestions about what
to look for, see the previous article in this
series, on needs assessment .

This is also the time for the consultant to


make a diagnosis, in order to recommend
appropriate interventions.
Feedback
• This two-way process serves to tell what we found
out, based on an analysis of the data.

Everyone who contributed information should have


an opportunity to learn about the findings of the
assessment process (provided there is no apparent
breach of anyone's confidentiality.)

This provides an opportunity for the organization's


people to become involved in the change process, to
learn about how different parts of the organization
affect each other, and to participate in selecting
appropriate change interventions.
Action planning
• In this step we will distill recommendations from the
assessment and feedback, consider alternative actions
and focus our intervention(s) on activities that have
the most leverage to effect positive change in the
organization.

An implementation plan will be developed that is


based on the assessment data, is logically organized,
results- oriented, measurable and rewarded. We must
plan for a participative decision-making process for
the intervention.
Intervention
Now, and only now, do we actually
carry out the change process.
It is important to follow the action
plan, yet remain flexible enough to
modify the process as the
organization changes and as new
information emerges.
Evaluation
• Successful OD must have made meaningful
changes in the performance and efficiency of
the people and their organization.

We need to have an evaluation procedure to


verify this success, identify needs for new or
continuing OD activities, and improve the OD
process itself to help make future interventions
more successful.
Adoption.

After steps have been made to change the


organization and plans have been formulated,
we follow-up by implementing processes to
insure that this remains an ongoing activity
within the organization, that commitments for
action have been obtained, and that they will
be carried out.
Separation.
• We must recognize when it is more productive
for the client and consultant to undertake other
activities, and when continued consultation is
counterproductive. We also should plan for
future contacts, to monitor the success of this
change and possibly to plan for future change
activities.
OD PROCESS
DIAGNOSING THE SYSTEM, ITS
SUBUNITS AND PROCESS

Diagnostic activities
Activities designed to provide an accurate
account of things as they are which are needed
of two reasons first is to know the state of the
things or what the current state is, second to
know the effects of the actions taken or know
the consequences of the actions taken.
• For each of the major targets in an organization, the
typical information desired and common methods of
obtaining the information are given.

• The OD practitioner may be interested in all these


target groups or in only few of them; he or she may
work with one subsystem during subsequent phases.

• Frequently, the improvement strategy calls for


concentrating on different organizational targets in a
planned sequence.
Dimensions to consider in Diagnosis
• Timing
• Extent of participation
• Confidentiality
• Individual-anonymous vs. group
• Pre-selection of variable vs. emergent selection of variables
• Developed, validated questionnaire vs. interviews
• Data gathering analysis
• Isolated event vs. long term strategy
• Nature of target population
• Type of technique used
Classifying OD Interventions
Diagnostic Activities
Fact finding activities designed to ascertain the
sate of the system the status of a problem; the
way the things are available methods range
from projective devices to more traditional
data collection methods like interviews,
questionnaires survey etc.
Team building Activities
Activities designed to enhance the effective
operation of system teams.
These activities focus on task issues such as
the ways the things are done the skills and
resources needed to accomplish tasks, the
quality of relationship among the team
members or between members and the leader,
and how well the team gets its job done.
Intergroup Activities
Activities designed to improve the
effectiveness of interdependent groups
that work together to produce a common
output.

They focus on joint activities and the


output of the group as considered as a
single system rather than two subsystems.
Survey feedback Activities
Activities that rely on questionnaire surveys to
generate information that is then used to
identify problems and opportunities. Groups
analyze the data regarding their performance
and design actions plans to improve or correct
problems.
Education and Training Activities

Activities designed to improve individual


skills, abilities, and knowledge.

Several activities are available and several


approaches possible.
Technostructural/ Structural Activities
Activities designed to improve the effectiveness of
organizational structures and job designs.

The activities may take the form of experimenting


with new organization structures and evaluating their
effectiveness in terms of specific goals or devising
new ways to bring technical resources to bear on
problems
Process Consultation Activities
• Activities that help the client to perceive
understand and act upon process events which
occur in the client’s environment.
• These activities perhaps more accurately
describe an approach a consulting mode in
which the client gets insight into the human
process in organizations and learn skills in
diagnosing and managing them.
Grid Organization Development
Activities
Activities Developed by Blake and Mouton,
which constitute a six phase change model
involving the total organization.
Internal resources are developed to conduct
most of the programs, which upgrading
individual skills and leadership abilities, then
to intergroup relations activities.
Later phases include corporate planning for
improvement activities. Finally an evaluation
phase assessing change in the organization
culture and looking towards future directions.
Third Party Peace Making Activities

Activities conducted by a skilled consultant to


help two members of the organization to
resolve their conflicts.
Coaching or Counseling Activities

The activities that entail the consultant to help


define the goals learn new behavior to achieve
more with better means.
Life and Career Planning Activities

Activities which enable the individuals to


focus on their life and career objectives and
how to go about achieving them.
Planning and Goal Setting Activities

Activities that include theory and experience


in planning and goal setting, problem-solving
models, planning paradigms ideal organization
versus real organization discrepancy models,
and the like.
Strategic Management Activities

Activities that help key policy makers to


reflect systematically on the organization’s
basic mission and goals and environmental
demands.
Organizational Transformation
Activities

Activities that involve large scale system


changes; activities designed to fundamentally
change the nature of the organization. Almost
everything about the organization is changed.
The six box model
The six box model
• Another diagnostic tool is Marvin Weisbord’s
six-box model, a diagnostic tool or frame work
published in 1976, and still widely used by OD
practitioners.
• This model tells the practitioner where to look
and what to look for diagnosing organizational
problems.
Weisbord’s identifies Six Critical
Areas

• Purposes- What business we are in? What is the


core business?

• Structures- How do we divide the work? How the


authority is delegated?

• Rewards- What are the areas of functionality that


have rewards?
• Helpful mechanisms-Do the company has
adequate coordinating technologies?

• Relationship- how is the conflict


managed in the organization?

• Leadership-Where things must go right if


the organization is t be successful?
Beckhard’s Confrontation Meeting
A face-to-face discussion among two or more
people or team in conflict, for example
between team mates or between an athlete and
coach.
It involves
• Working with the whole system in the room.
• People gather in heterogeneous groupings to
consider future possibilities.
• After sharing, promises for actions are made
and some management priorities selected.
• At the end of the day, management will
respond to these actions.
• This is then accompanied by a follow-up
discussion in a few weeks’ time.
Confrontation meeting is an activity which
allows entire management group, composed of
individual from all levels of the
organization to take a quick reading on its
own health and within matter of hours to
set action plan for improving it.
This activity is based on the following
aspects

• Experience with an action oriented method of planned


change.

• It involves the entire in a joint action-planning


programme.

• The meeting can be conducted several times with one


morning and one evening session involving only two
or more hours out of usual working days.
Benefits of Confrontation meetings

• Direct communication is improved


• Morale of employees increased.
• Better work culture.
• Improve inter department human relationship
• Get solutions on day-to-day problems.
The basic elements of the
Confrontation meeting are
Climate setting

It requires one hour. In the very beginning, the


top executive communicates to the entire
management group his objectives for the
meeting and his concern for and interest in
open discussion and problem facing
Information collection

• The entire group of employees is divided into small


heterogeneous units consisting of seven to eight
participants.

• If there is top management group it meets as a


separate unit. No boss and subordinates are placed
together.

• Each unit consists of participants from each


functional area.
Information sharing
Each unit's representative writes his unit's entire
results on a sheet paper, which is displayed at a
meeting hall.

Meeting leader provides some major categories in


which all the data from all the sheets can be classified

E.g. If there are 100 items, the possibility is that


these can be classified into 8-9 groups involving
heading such as communication difficulties, problem
with top management etc.
Priority setting & grouping planning.

• The entire group engages itself in a 15 min general


session.
• With the meeting leader the participants go through
the raw data on the duplicated sheets and assign a
category number to each element of data.
• People assemble in their functional natural work units
in for one or more hours.
• Thus HR members drawn from all level assemble in
one unit, in technical another and so on.
Organization action plan
• Total group is assembled in a general session. Each
functional unit reports its commitments and plans to
the total group.

• Reports and enlists the items which its members


believe the management team should deal with first.

• Top management is required to react to this list and


make commitments for action where needed.
Immediate follow-up by top team

Top management team is required to meet


immediately after the completion of the
confrontation meeting to plan first a set of
follow up action which is to be taken
Progress review

• Confrontations can be negative, exacerbating


conflicts, especially if participants are angry
and express that anger in hurtful accusations.

• However, if conducted thoughtfully, with


consideration for the feelings and situation of
other people, confrontations can be useful in
helping to identify and solve problems.
THE END
THANK YOU
Copyright MONOJIT BHATTACHARYA
1BI06MBA20
2007-08