DEFINITION OF ORGANIZATION DEVELOPMENT (OD)

According to Cummings and Worly - Organization Development is "a systematic application of behavioural science knowledge to the planned development and reinforcement of organizational strategies, structures, and processes for improving an organization's effectiveness."

According to Burk and Hornstien "Organization development is a process of planned change - change of an organization's culture from one which avoids an examination of social processes (especially decision making, planning and communication) to one which institutionalizes and legitimizes this examination".

According to Warren Bennis - "Organization development is a response to change, a complex educational strategy intended to change the beliefs, attitudes and structure of organization so that they can better adapt to new technologies, markets and challenges".

American Society for Training and Development, defined OD as, "An effort

  1. planned,
  2. organization wide,
  3. managed from the top, in order to
  4. increase organizational effectiveness and health, through
  5. planned intervention in the organizations "processes" using behavioural science knowledge".

What is the definition of Organizational Development?

From the above definitions we can say that organization development is an organizational improvement strategy. The term "Organization Development" (OD) may be defined as a technique for bringing change in the entire organization.

In the late 1950s and early 1960s it emerged out of insights from group dynamics and from the theory and practice of planned change. Organization development is about how people and organizations function and how to get them to function better. OD programmes are long-term, planned, sustained efforts. It is based on knowledge from behavioural science disciplines such as psychology, social psychology, sociology, anthropology, systems theory, organizational behaviour, organization theory and management.

The two major goals of OD programmes are:

  1. To improve the functioning of individuals, teams and the total organization, and
  2. To teach organization members how to continuously improve their own functioning.

It is a modern approach to the management of change and the development of human resource. It is an organization wide planned change for improvement through the use of behavioural science techniques. Organizational Development programmes lead to improved organization performance through an improved decision making climate.


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