What is Organizational Development?
There are over 39 million Google references to the term ‘organizational development’. But what is it? What does it mean? How can it benefit an organization?
Organizational development training course is primarily concerned with managing change and enhancing performance. The term originated from the Human Relations Movement of the 1930s. Management thinker Kurt Lewin is widely considered as the originator of the term. There was a realization that the way organizations were structured have an impact on the behaviour of the people working in them.
In the last 25 years, organizational development training course has focused on the ability to adapt to the organization’s fast-changing environment. Three concepts that are popular now are organizational learning, knowledge management, and organizational culture.
These 3 Concepts are now the Essence of Organizational Development
Organizational learning originated from Peter Senge’s concept of the learning organization. He posited that organization’s that survive and thrive in times of rapid environmental change, are learning organizations.
These are structures that are continually learning and adapting to their changing environment. Their systems, processes, and outlook are always open to change and adaption.
Knowledge management refers to the collection, storage, and use of explicit and tacit knowledge that assists the organization is thrive and prosper. This knowledge is essentially the knowledge that people have of their job, the project’s they invest in, and the capabilities they offer.
The argument for managing knowledge is based on the notion that when people leave the organization to work elsewhere, they take with them essential knowledge necessary for the organization. This knowledge is not necessarily documented.
The challenge is to keep that knowledge within the confines of the organization but documenting it and passing it on to other workers.
Organizational culture is the unique identity an organization has. It can be explicit in the symbols, uniforms and practices employees use. Or it can be subtler.
For example, how people treat each other and who has the real ‘power’. There are ways and means of measuring this culture. But why is this important?
All organizations have a culture. The question is: Does the current culture serve the best interests and needs of the enterprise? And if it doesn’t, how do we go about changing it? WINNERS-at-WORK can assist organizations with creating a productive workplace culture.
What are the Overall Objectives of Organizational Development?
Broadly speaking, organizational development training course aims to do the following:
- To help the individual understand, appreciate, and commit to the organization’s primary vision. Organizational development is about aligning the needs and interests of the individual with those of the organization.
- To encourage employees to work collaboratively to solve problems and meet challenges facing the organization now and in the future.
- To heighten trust in the organization, particularly between managers and employees. This entails improving formal and informal communication.
- To engage the hearts and minds of employees in the decision-making process. The argument is that organizations need the full input of all people to make quality and informed decisions now and in the future.
- To foster an organization with a high morale and a ‘can do attitude’.
- To build a more democratic structure than shapes cross-functional alliances and relies less on the hierarchical structures of the twentieth century.
- To implement a culture of innovation and continuous improvement within the organization to better equip itself for the challenges a fast-paced marketplace poses.
- To become more agile to meet the needs of the marketplace.
Overall, the main objective of organizational development training course is to improve an organization’s capacity to manage the internal and external environments through better processes and interpersonal relationships. This involves better decision-making, both in quality, involvement, and speed. It entails effective communication and trust between all members of the organization.
Leadership is a critical component of successful organizational development. Without good leadership, organizational development is not possible. Organizational development training course is the cultivation and adherence to a set of values that are widely shared and explicitly visible in the way the business of the organization is conducted.
WINNERS-at-WORK assists organizational leaders to improve its performance using a wide range of organizational development practices.