Impetus for Change Grading Guide
MGT/426 Version 8
Managing Change in the Workplace
Copyright © 2016, 2015, 2014, 2011 by University of Phoenix. All rights reserved.
University of Phoenix® is a registered trademark of Apollo Group, Inc. in the United States and/or other countries.
Microsoft®, Windows®, and Windows NT® are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries. All
other company and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies. Use of these marks is not intended
to imply endorsement, sponsorship, or affiliation.
Impetus for Change Grading
MGT/426 Version 8
Edited in accordance with University of Phoenix® editorial standards and practices.
Impetus for Change Grading
MGT/426 Version 8
Individual Assignment: Impetus for Change
Purpose of Assignment
In Week 1, students start to think about how change may impact an organization, how leadership is effective or
ineffective in communicating, and to hear from other students about types of changes experienced or
Chapters 2, 3, and 18
Prepare an infographic (Microsoft®
PowerPoint®, Publisher®, Word, or sites such
as Glogster® or PiktoChart® )
Identify the type of change.
Explain how the change was communicated.
Identify which leaders were involved in the
Identify the change model (if possible).
Analysis is 1050 words
The paper—including tables and graphs,
headings, title page, and reference page—is
consistent with APA formatting guidelines and
meets course-level requirements.
Intellectual property is recognized with in-text
citations and a reference page.
Impetus for Change Grading
MGT/426 Version 8
Paragraph and sentence transitions are
present, logical, and maintain the flow
throughout the paper.
Sentences are complete, clear, and concise.
Rules of grammar and usage are followed
including spelling and punctuation.
3 The Organization Development Practitioner
Discuss the roles and characteristics of OD practitioners.
Describe the competencies required of effective OD practitioners.
Compare the internal versus external OD practitioner.
Understand the values and ethics guiding the practice of OD.
Chapters 1 and 2 provided an overview of the field of organization development and a
description of the nature of planned change. This chapter extends that introduction by
examining the people who perform organization development (OD). A closer look at OD
practitioners can provide a more personal perspective on the field and can help us
understand how and why OD relies so heavily on personal relationships between
practitioners and organization members.
Much of the literature about OD practitioners views them as internal or external
consultants providing professional services—diagnosing systems, developing
interventions, and helping to implement them. Perspectives that are more recent
expand the practice scope to include professionals in related disciplines, such as
industrial psychology, human resource management, and strategic management, as well
as line managers who have learned how to carry out OD to change and develop their
A great deal of opinion and some research studies have focused on the necessary skills
and knowledge of an effective OD practitioner. Studies of the profession provide a
comprehensive list of basic skills and knowledge that all effective OD practitioners must
Most of the relevant literature focuses on people specializing in OD as a profession and
addresses their roles and careers. The OD practitioner's role can be described in relation
to its position: internal to the organization, external to it, or in a team comprising both
internal and external consultants. The OD practitioner's role can also be examined in
terms of its marginality in organizations, of the emotional demands made on the
practitioner, and of where it fits along a continuum from client-centered to consultantcentered functioning. Finally, organization development is an emerging profession
providing alternative opportunities for gaining competence and developing a career. The
stressful nature of helping professions, however, suggests that OD practitioners must
cope with the possibility of professional burnout.
As in other helping professions, such as medicine and law, values and ethics play an
important role in guiding OD practice and in minimizing the chances that clients will be
neglected or abused.
3-1 Who Is the Organization Development
Throughout this text, the term organization development practitioner refers to at least
three sets of people. The most obvious group of OD practitioners are those people
specializing in OD as a profession. They may be internal or external consultants who
offer professional services to organizations, including their top managers, functional
department heads, and staff groups. OD professionals traditionally have shared a
common set of humanistic values promoting open communications, employee
involvement, and personal growth and development. They tend to have common
training, skills, and experience in the social processes of organizations (for example,
group dynamics, decision making, and communications). In recent years, OD
professionals have expanded those traditional values and skill sets to include more
concern for organizational effectiveness, competitiveness, and bottom-line results, and
greater attention to the technical, structural, and strategic parts of organizations. That
expansion, mainly in response to the highly competitive demands facing modern
organizations, has resulted in a more diverse set of OD professionals geared to helping
organizations cope with those pressures.1
The second set of people to whom the term OD practitioner applies are those
specializing in fields related to OD, such as human resource management, organization
design, quality control, information technology, and business strategy. These contentoriented fields increasingly are becoming integrated with OD's process orientation,
particularly as OD projects have become more comprehensive, involving multiple
features and varying parts of organizations. For example, the integrated strategic change
intervention described in Chapter 18 and the dynamic strategy-making intervention
presented in Chapter 21 are the result of marrying OD with business strategy.2 A
growing number of professionals in these related fields are gaining experience and
competence in OD, mainly through working with OD professionals on large-scale
projects and through attending OD training sessions. Most of the large accounting firms,
for example, diversified into management consulting and change management.3 In most
cases, professionals in these related fields do not subscribe fully to traditional OD
values, nor do they have extensive OD training and experience. Rather, they have formal
training and experience in their respective specialties, such as industrial engineering,
information systems, or corporate strategy. They are OD practitioners in the sense that
they apply their special competence within an OD-like process, typically by engaging OD
professionals and managers to design and implement change programs. They also
practice OD when they apply their OD competence to their own specialties, thus
spreading an OD perspective into such areas as compensation practices, work design,
labor relations, and strategic planning.
The third set of people to whom the term OD practitioner applies are the increasing
number of managers and administrators who have gained competence in OD and who
apply it to their own work areas. Studies and recent articles argue that OD increasingly
is applied by managers rather than by OD professionals.4 Such studies suggest that the
faster pace of change affecting organizations today is highlighting the centrality of the
manager in managing change. Consequently, OD must become a general management
skill. Along those lines, Kanter studied a growing number of firms, such as General
Electric, Hewlett-Packard, and 3M, where managers and employees have become
“change masters.”5 They have gained the expertise to introduce change and innovation
into the organization.
Managers tend to gain competence in OD through interacting with OD professionals in
actual change programs. This on-the-job training frequently is supplemented with more
formal OD training, such as the various workshops offered by the National Training
Laboratories (NTL), USC's Center for Effective Organizations, the Center for Creative
Leadership, the Gestalt Institute, UCLA's Extension Service, the Tavistock Institute, the
Institute for Socio-Economic Enterprises (ISEOR), and others. Line managers
increasingly are attending such external programs. Moreover, a growing number of
organizations, including Capital One, Disney, and General Electric, have instituted inhouse training programs for managers to learn how to develop and change their work
units. As managers gain OD competence, they become its most basic practitioners.
In practice, the distinctions among the three sets of OD practitioners are blurring. A
growing number of managers have transferred, either temporarily or permanently, into
the OD profession. For example, companies such as Procter & Gamble have trained and
rotated managers into full-time OD roles so that they can gain skills and experience
needed for higher-level management positions. Also, it is increasingly common to find
managers and staff specialists using their experience in OD to become external
consultants. More OD practitioners are gaining professional competence in related
specialties, such as business process reengineering, reward systems, and strategic
planning. Conversely, many specialists in those related areas are achieving professional
competence in OD. Cross-training and integration are producing a more comprehensive
and complex kind of OD practitioner—one with a greater diversity of values, skills, and
experience than a traditional practitioner.
3-2 Competencies of an Effective Organization
The literature about OD competencies reveals a mixture of personality traits,
experiences, knowledge, and skills presumed to lead to effective practice. For example,
research on the characteristics of successful change practitioners yields the following list
of attributes and abilities: diagnostic ability, basic knowledge of behavioral science
techniques, empathy, knowledge of the theories and methods within the consultant's
own discipline, goal-setting ability, problem-solving ability, ability to perform selfassessment, ability to see things objectively, imagination, flexibility, honesty,
consistency, and trust.6 Although these qualities and skills are laudable, there has been
relatively little consensus or research about their importance to effective OD practice.
Two projects have sought to define, categorize, and prioritize the skills and knowledge
required of OD practitioners. In the first effort, a broad group of well-known
practitioners and researchers were asked to review and update a list of professional
competencies. This survey resulted in a list of 187 statements in nine areas of OD
practice, including entry, start-up, assessment and feedback, action planning,
intervention, evaluation, adoption, separation, and general competencies.7 The
statements ranged from “staying centered in the present, focusing on the ongoing
process” and “understanding and explaining how diversity will affect the diagnosis of
the culture” to “basing change on business strategy and business needs” and “being
comfortable with quantum leaps, radical shifts, and paradigm changes.” Other items
added to the list relate to international OD, large group interventions, and
To understand the relative importance of this long list, Worley and his colleagues
collected data from 364 OD practitioners.8 The average respondent had about eight
years of OD experience, a master's degree, and came from the United States. The results
suggested an underlying structure to the list. Twenty-three competencies were
generated that reflected both the skills and knowledge necessary to conduct planned
change processes and the individual characteristics necessary to be an effective OD
practitioner. Similar to other lists, the competencies included the ability to evaluate
change, work with large-scale change efforts, create implementation plans, and manage
diversity. One of the more surprising results, however, was the emergence of “self
mastery” as the most important competence. The results supported the long-held belief
that good OD practitioners know themselves and that such knowledge forms the basis of
The second project, sponsored by the Organization Development and Change Division
of the Academy of Management,9 sought to develop a list of competencies to guide
curriculum development in graduate OD programs. More than 40 OD practitioners and
researchers worked to develop the two competency lists shown in Table 3.1. First,
foundation competencies are oriented toward descriptions of an existing system. They
include knowledge from organization behavior, psychology, group dynamics,
management and organization theory, research methods, and business practices.
Second, core competencies are aimed at how systems change over time. They include
knowledge of organization design, organization research, system dynamics, OD history,
and theories and models for change; they also involve the skills needed to manage the
consulting process, to analyze and diagnose systems, to design and choose
interventions, to facilitate processes, to develop clients' capability to manage their own
change, and to evaluate organization change.
The information in Table 3.1 applies primarily to people specializing in OD as a
profession. For them, possessing the listed knowledge and skills seems reasonable,
especially in light of the growing diversity and complexity of interventions in OD.
Gaining competence in those areas may take considerable time and effort, and it is
questionable whether the other two types of OD practitioners—managers and specialists
in related fields—also need that full range of skills and knowledge. It seems more
reasonable to suggest that some subset of the items listed in Table 3.1should apply to
all OD practitioners, whether they are OD professionals, managers, or related
specialists. Those items would constitute the practitioner's basic skills and knowledge.
Beyond that background, the three types of OD practitioners likely would differ in areas
of concentration. OD professionals would extend their breadth of skills across the
remaining categories in Table 3.1; managers would focus on the functional knowledge
of business areas; and related specialists would concentrate on skills in their respective
Based on the data in Table 3.1 and the other studies available, all OD practitioners
should have the following basic skills and knowledge to be effective.
3-2a Intrapersonal Skills or “Self-Management”
Despite the growing knowledge base and sophistication of the field, organization
development is still a human craft. As the primary instrument of diagnosis and change,
practitioners often must process complex, ambiguous information and make informed
judgments about its relevance to organizational issues.
The core competency of analysis and diagnosis listed in Table 3.1 includes the ability
to inquire into one's self, and as noted above, it remains one of the cornerstone skills in
OD.10 Practitioners must have the personal centering to know their own values, feelings,
and purposes as well as the integrity to behave responsibly in a helping relationship with
others. Bob Tannenbaum, one of the founders of OD, argued that self-knowledge is the
most central ingredient in OD practice and suggested that practitioners are becoming
too enamored with skills and techniques.11 There are data to support his view. A study of
416 OD practitioners found that 47% agreed with the statement, “Many of the new
entrants into the field have little understanding of or appreciation for the history or
values underlying the field.”12 Because OD is a highly uncertain process
requiring constant adjustment and innovation, practitioners must have active learning
skills and a reasonable balance between their rational and emotional sides. Finally, OD
practice can be highly stressful and can lead to early burnout, so practitioners need to
know how to manage their own stress.
TABLE 3.1 Knowledge and Skill Requirements of
3-2b Interpersonal Skills
Practitioners must create and maintain effective relationships with individuals and
groups within the organization and help them gain the competence necessary to solve
their own problems. Table 3.1 identifies group dynamics, comparative cultural
perspectives, and business functions as foundation knowledge, and managing the
consulting process and facilitation as core skills. All of these interpersonal competencies
promote effective helping relationships. Such relationships start with a grasp of the
organization's perspective and require listening to members' perceptions and feelings to
understand how they see themselves and the organization—a process called “active
listening.” This understanding provides a starting point for joint diagnosis and problem
solving. Practitioners must establish trust and rapport with organization members so
that they can share pertinent information and work effectively together. This requires
being able to converse in members' own language and to give and receive feedback
about how the relationship is progressing.
To help members learn new skills and behaviors, practitioners must serve as role
models of what is expected. They must act in ways that are credible to organization
members and provide them with the counseling and coaching necessary to develop and
change. Because the helping relationship is jointly determined, practitioners need to be
able to negotiate an acceptable role and to manage changing expectations and demands.
3-2c General Consultation Skills
Table 3.1 identifies the ability to manage the consulting process and the ability to
design interventions as core competencies that all OD practitioners should possess. OD
starts with diagnosing an organization or department to understand its current
functioning and to discover areas for further development. OD practitioners need to
know how to carry out an effective diagnosis, at least at a rudimentary level. They should
know how to engage organization members in diagnosis, how to help them ask the right
questions, and how to collect and analyze information. A manager, for example, should
be able to work with subordinates to determine jointly the organization's or
department's strengths or problems. The manager should know basic diagnostic
questions (see Chapter 5), some methods for gathering information, such as interviews
or surveys, and some techniques for analyzing it, such as force-field analysis or
statistical means and distributions (see Chapter 6).
In addition to diagnosis, OD practitioners should know how to design and execute an
intervention. They need to be able to define an action plan and to gain commitment to
the program. They also need to know how to tailor the intervention to the situation,
using information about how the change is progressing to guide implementation
(see Chapter 9). For example, managers should be ab ...
Purchase answer to see full