Organization Development Articles

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Anatomy of a Diversity Initiative

Meaningful interest in diversity, inclusion, and equity have waxed and waned in the United States since the 1940s and probably much earlier. World War II saw women taking an active role in the workplace for the first time. In 1948, President Truman of...

Creating Safe Teams

An important key to having great teams and organizations is their sense of safety. Their members do not fear censure should their all-too-human egos and emotions become evident. They feel free to speak, to dissent, to be radical, and even outlandish. This freedom is...

You Can’t Do It Alone and. . .

You Don't Have to Many leaders have the notion that it is lonely at the top. Like so many things, if you believe it, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. The fact is no one has ever accomplished anything of any significance alone. Think about that. I think about my...

Get to Critical Mass Support with System Mapping

Creating change in human systems such as teams and organizations is a matter of developing a critical mass of support for the change goal. Of course, developing that critical mass may involve working through whatever resistances there are and resolving the conflicts...

Resolving Conflict in Teams & Organizations

A few months ago, I was working with five faculty members of a university sociology department. They were having difficulty getting along with each other. There were lots of conflicts and negative judgments were abundant. I interviewed each one. They were all...

Changing an Organization’s Culture

Changing an organization's culture or the norms of a team is not something to take lightly. An organization's culture is the pattern of how it routinely behaves much like the personality of a human being. The analogy is apt since an organization is a human system....

The Secret Sauce for Making Teams Work

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.” -- Margaret Mead She was pissed! She couldn't make her team work. As the new leader of a perennial best-company-to-work-for, she was...

Don’t Waste Your Strategic Plan

Don't waste your strategic plan. A good strategic plan serves as the focal point for how an organization toward both long and short-range success. It provides… Direction for aligning an organization's staff and activitiesCriteria for organizational decision-making....

Definition of Organization Development

Let’s clarify the definition of organization development (OD), the most powerful technology for managing change in human systems. It is unclear to too many people and organizations who could need it. Not too long ago, I was having dinner with a client during a project...

Quick and Easy Consensus Decision-Making

Consensus decision-making has the reputation of being very time-consuming. It needn’t be if the steps outlined below are followed. The failure of most supposed consensus procedures result from failing to ask those objecting if they are willing to accede to the...

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