Organizational development is an understanding of how an organization adapts and flexes to execute effectively under a constant barrage of changing conditions. OD, as it is often called, is the use of a system of dynamics rather than a static approach, to organizational effectiveness. Its primary focus is on alignment, the extent to which leadership continually aligns strategy, processes, roles, responsibilities, skills and expectations. In taking this system’s view, the role of the leader and leadership team is one of creating and managing the conditions for successful performance for the overall enterprise. This is in stark contrast to a leadership team comprised of functional heads that represent only parochial interests with no mandate or understanding for managing across functional boundaries.
Most often, organizational development engagements take the form of consulting initiatives with the leadership team and other key individuals. They face competitive threats, changes in the economy, and the scarcity of human and material resources that have precipitated challenges inside organizations such as:
- The loss of key talent
- Breakdowns in communication across teams or departments
- “Personality conflicts” that spill over to contention among the ranks
- Major concerns with product quality and delivery of services
- Aligning expectations up, down and across the organization
- Working more effectively with customers and business partners
- Creating a greater sense of accountability across all individuals in an organization
- Getting more individuals to think and act with the big picture in mind, not just what is most immediate
- Working through gaps and overlaps in roles and responsibilities that often result in pointing fingers and blaming others
In working through these issues with leadership teams, Mentoré helps them to define and clarify expectations in terms of roles and responsibilities for certain key positions. It also means the leadership team needs to determine their role, to decide where they as a team must focus to create value for the organization. These interventions create concrete steps, measurable goals and specific outputs that are needed to accommodate and assimilate the changes that leadership identifies as most critical to organizational success.
Building an Adaptive Organization
New markets, increased competition, razor thin margins, and global business trends create both pressures and opportunities for almost every business. The organizations that adapt and assimilate these changes into their strategy and business processes are better prepared to capitalize on the opportunities.
By adapting to change this creates a business opportunity rather than a business environment that succumbs to the chaos and pain that change can inflict. Mentoré’s expertise in change leadership has been tapped by top and mid-level executives in the throes of major realignment initiatives.
“Alan is one of the best in the business…whether it in leadership development, training, HR consulting, or organization development work. I would – and have – recommended him to the most difficult clients because he can work with anyone!”
— Shirley Ross, Ph.D. Chief Talent Management Officer and Senior Advisor, US Air Force, The Pentagon