Ing. Thomas
Zsulits, BA

Organizational development is an often-heard term and a key organizational function but why is it like that?

We observe, that our world is getting mor and more dynamic and complex. More and more often we have the situation, that we have to react faster, take decisions without knowing nessesary facts or having needed information.

Our internal or external customers expect a higher flexibility without giving us a plan or structure…

We need to change our way of working to adapt to this future world. This is not very popular. To change processes or organizations need a high attention on top level of a company.

Most of the companies run projects without or with different change management methods. This leads very often to high costs, time, energy and a drop in motivation. Fail change projects, very often the contend and process fails, too.

To establish new processes and adapt organizations accordingly are very difficult processes without a guarantee on success. Studies show a failure rate of 80%…

Successful change or transformation management – independent if it is a process, department or company – only gets it‘s full impact, by levering intelligent, process and creative management of all nessesary levers in a balanced way.

Our power and impact is in areas like cultural transformations, Digitalization, realignment, integration and consolidation of departments or enterprises.

Build capacity to change and achieve greater effectiveness. Organizational development is aimed at organizational effectiveness. It, therefore, has a number of (business) outcomes. These can differ between organizations, but usually, they do include financial performance, customer satisfaction, organizational member engagement, and an increased capacity to adapt and renew the organization. These are not always clear-cut. Sometimes it is about building a competitive advantage, in whichever way that is defined. We will explore these outcomes later in this article

Developing, improving, and reinforcing strategies, structures, and processes. The last part of our definition states that organizational development applies to changes in strategy, structure, and/or processes. This implies a system-approach, where we focus on an entire organizational system. This can include the full organization, one or more locations, or a single department.

Organizational design has become more crucial over time. Today’s world is characterized by Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, and Ambiguity (VUCA). This VUCA world requires new agility from organizations, and organizational development is the means to that end.

Globalization leads to a much greater interconnectedness and opens up organizations to world-wide opportunities and threats.

Finally, business systems become better at measuring relevant data, changing the way success is measured. On top of that, advanced people analytics can help to further drive organizational outcomes.

OD focuses on building the organization’s ability to assess its current functioning and tweak it to achieve its goals. It is, therefore, a continuous process, whereas change processes are often temporarily.

This also emphasizes the relevance of OD. In this VUCA world, change is becoming a constant factor. OD is an integral approach to ensuring this constant change.