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Organizational Development became recognized as a field through the combination of five major practices or branches. The first branch (or practice) of OD emerged from National Training Laboratories. Laboratory Training (as the first branch is termed) is known for the creation and use of T-Groups — small group designed to learn about intra/interpersonal and group dynamics (1950s). The second branch, called Action Research and Survey Feedback, was developed from social scientist?s interest in applying research methods to manage change. Kurt Lewin was the primary author of the first two stems and is considered by many to be one of the original pioneers of OD (1940s and 1950s).
The third branch, Participative Management was based on the work of Renis Likert who characterized organizations as having four types of management systems (Exploitative authoritative, Benevolent authoritative, Consultative, and Participative group systems). Likert was also known for creating measures of attitude which later became known as the 5 point Likert scale. The fourth branch focused on Productivity and the Quality of Work Life (QWL) which dealt with the integration of work and people, resulting in the establishment of self managed work groups (1950s to 1970s) and later developed into Employee Involvement initiatives (1970s to 1980s). The last branch is the Strategic Change background which involves improving alignment between organizational strategy, design and external environment ? Richard Beckhard is credited with open systems planning in the Strategic Change background.
Assignment Instructions:
The purpose of this assignment is to assess the implications and relevance of your selected intervention and discuss why the intervention was successful or failing or promising.
1. Choose one of the five branches of OD Practice.
1st branch = Laboratory Training, 2nd branch = Action Research and Survey Feedback, 3rd branch = Participative Management, 4th branch = Quality of Work Life,
and the 5th branch = Strategic Change.
2. Conduct an investigative search in the UoR database to gather details on the origin of one of the five practices of OD. A minimum of two research articles should
provide enough coverage for your discussion.
In your discussion, you should address the following elements:
a. Identify the author(s) of the practice and a date or era to which it can be attributed.
b. Consider how the researcher?s work was regarded during that time and discuss any struggles or resistance encountered in establishing the background as a valid
c. In your conclusion, discuss the implications of the practice and the relevance to organizational interventions today (consider where, when, how, to whom and under
which circumstances might these interventions be used). Here is where you use your personal knowledge and experience ? based on what you have read, develop
and discuss your ideas about the quality and practicality of the practice using conventional knowledge