Organization Effectiveness and Development
The function of organizational development (OD) is to maximize organization performance.
Long range perspective
OD is not a “quick fix” strategy for solving short-term performance problems but rather the means to bring about more complex organizational change. Examples of this include moving from a functional organization structure to a matrix structure or from a departmental to a team-based structure. In this arena, OD is often coupled with strategic business planning.
Emphasis on the system
In OD the emphasis is on the system, rather than on the individual as the target of change. A “system” can be an entire organization or a relatively autonomous sub-system such as a division or a business unit. That is, OD does not focus only on changing people or only on changing structures or only on changing technology (i.e., the work processes and tools used to convert inputs to outputs), but rather it focuses on making simultaneous improvements in all these areas.
Organization development employs a variety of tools and processes that have their basis in human behavioral science and can include:
- Team building and development
- Work process analysis and redesign
- Management development
- Job design
- Job enrichment
- Executive coaching
- Training delivery
- Communication skills building – interpersonal and organizational
Put very simply, OD helps an organization improve by focusing on how it is structured and how the people work together. However, focusing only on human interaction, while important, is insufficient to change an organization’s culture so that its productivity is increased and its quality of work life is enhanced. We must focus on people, structures, and technology (processes and tools) simultaneously.
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