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    FMC ABERDEEN Organizational Analysis: Change and Development

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    Focus on changes:

    1. Organizational Change
    2. Organizational Development

    Address implementation plan and contingency analysis.

    What is the most important element in an organizational analysis and why?

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    Solution Preview

    Please see the first reference - this is a great article on Contingency Models


    Managing a successful business requires healthy, ongoing leadership and management, planning, product and service development, marketing and financial management. An organization is basically a group of people intentionally organized to accomplish an overall, common goal or set of goals. Organizations have major subsystems, such as departments, programs and/or teams. Each of these subsystems have a way of doing things to achieve the overall goals of the organization. Often, these systems and processes are defined by plans, policies and procedures.

    It helps to think of organization as systems. A system is an organized collection of parts that are highly integrated in order to accomplish an overall goal. Systems have inputs, processes, outputs and outcomes. The organizational system is defined by its legal documents, mission, goals and strategies, and its policies and procedures. The organization is depicted by its organization charts, job descriptions and marketing materials. The system is also maintained or controlled by policies and procedures, budgets, information.

    One of the common ways that people manage systems is to work backwards from what they want the system to produce. This process is essentially the same as the overall, standard, basic planning process. This process typically includes:
    a) Establishing overall goals
    b) Associating smaller goals or objectives along the way to each goal
    c) Designing strategies/methods or processes to meet the goals and objectives, and
    d) Identifying what resources are needed, including who will implement the methods and by when.

    There are some definitions that we should be aware of as changing the business culture or making an organizational change involves all of these.

    1. Managing Diversity: Managing diversity is a comprehensive managerial process for developing an environment that works for all employees. Managing diversity is a culture change process that ensures that the complexities within an organization (systems, policies and practices) do not benefit any one group more than another. It encourages managers to enable, empower and influence employees to operate with a set of challenges and opportunities that will create a harmonious and productive working environment in which each employee may achieve his or her full potential. It is inclusive and addresses workplace behaviors and understanding differences. It focuses on an organization's culture and climate. It enhances an organization understanding of the needs of the employees and customers so that the employees have a better capacity to perform their jobs, reach their goals and achieve the organization's mission. With a managing diversity capability, an organization can be more adaptable to future changes.
    2. Organizational Assessment (Diagnostic Phase): Organizational assessment involves finding out where the organization is at today. This process examines systems, policies and practices to ensure that they are flexible enough to support future environmental changes. It involves data collection to assess the organizational climate. It can consist of diversity scans, surveys, cultural audits, assessments of written and unwritten organization policies and procedures and reviews of complaint and grievance data.
    3. Organizational Culture: Organization culture refers to the underlying values, beliefs and principles that serve as a foundation for the organization's management system, as well as the set of management practices and behaviors that both exemplify and reinforce those principles.
    4. Understanding Differences: This is the awareness and acceptance of differences among and between people on both an interpersonal and personal level. It encompasses dimensions such as race, sex, age, thinking style, religion, sexual orientation, professional degrees and functionality. The objective is to enhance interpersonal and inter-functional relationships.

    This document will focus on Organizational Assessment or Organizational Analysis.


    Most, if not all, development projects have their origin in situations where the organization has not been efficient or effective in carrying out their mandate (discharging a function or providing a service), or they want to improve their ability to discharge their mandate. In other words, they want to perform better.

    An organization's performance is a function of the environment within which the organization exists, its capacities and its motivation. Any planned change to the environment, capacity or motivation occurs because of an implicit change theory. If an organization wants to change their performance, a diagnosis is undertaken and a series of hypotheses are developed and translated into action. The ultimate purpose is to improve organizational performance.

    There are some concerns below that affect the diagnosis of an organization and how the diagnosis is used:

    1. The concern about ownership is crucial. Who owns the results of the assessment and who is creating the hypotheses for change?
    2. The use of projects as the primary vehicle to support and change organizations is another concern. Projects may distort the organization if they are not carried out within the context of an organization's performance framework.
    3. There is concern about the timing of organization assessments.

    Organizational assessment is driven by both accountability and learning. From an accountability perspective, it may be required to demonstrate the performance of an organization to a licensing body or a boss. The main issue is to determine the merit of the organization as part of a decision about some aspect of the organization's funding or permission to operate. Learning and knowledge assessment provide a vehicle to better understand how an organization is functioning. The intent is to use this information internally to move beyond a picture of the current state and to improve the organization.

    An assessment is a large investment of time, money, resources and people. An organization must be ready to do the assessment and accept its results. The issue is how to get those in power to participate and to use the results. The process and findings have to be carried out in a manner that is positive to both the individuals involved and the development of the organization as a whole. Successful implementation of an organization assessment requires a good understanding of the stage of development within which the organization finds itself.


    Basically, organizational culture is the personality of the organization. Culture is comprised of the assumptions, values and norms of the organization members and their behaviors. Culture is a term that is difficult to express distinctly but everyone knows it when they sense it. You can tell the culture of an organization by looking at the arrangement of furniture, what they brag about, what members wear, etc. It is particularly important when attempting to manage organization-wide change. There are different types of culture:

    ? Academy: in this culture, the employees are highly skilled and tend to stay in the organization, while working their way up the ranks. The organization provides a stable environment in which employees can develop and exercise their skills.
    ? Baseball Team: Employees in this culture are 'free agents' who have highly prized skills. They are high in demand and can easily get jobs elsewhere. This type of culture exists in fast-paced, high-risk organizations.
    ? Club: Employees in this culture tend to fit into groups. Usually the employees start at the bottom and stay with the organization. The organization promotes from within and values seniority.
    ? Fortress: These organizations often undergo massive reorganizations. There are many opportunities for those with timely, specialized skills. Employees in this type of culture don't know if they'll be laid off or not.

    Understanding and accessing the organization's culture can mean the difference between success and failure in today's ever-changing business environment. What management pays attention to and rewards is often then strongest indicator of the organization's culture. The culture of an organization operates at both a conscious and unconscious level. Often the people who see the culture more clearly are those from the outside. Culture drives the organization and its actions. It guides how employees think, act and feel. It is dynamic and fluid and it is never static. Some aspects of culture are visible and tangible and others are intangible and unconscious. If the organization wants to maximize its ability to attain its strategic objectives, it must ...

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