Organization Assessment and Diagnosis

Why assess your organization?

Successful business executives constantly monitor financial, operational, and customer satisfaction  metrics in order to gauge the performance of their business.  Based on these metrics, they take appropriate action to anticipate and correct problems before they negatively affect business performance.  Likewise, it is important to understand how various organizational dynamics may be affecting the overall performance of the business.

An organization survey is an excellent way to “take the pulse” of what is working and not working, and how well aligned the organization is to effectively achieve its strategic objectives.  But there are several important considerations that executives should make prior to launching a survey.  The most important is how to achieve lasting and measurable improvements in organizational performance while increasing employee commitment to the organization’s goals and objectives.  Conducting a survey for any other reason is, in our opinion, a waste of time and money. 

Some key reasons why business executives decide to assess their organization include:

Assessment approach:

An effective organization survey is founded in a proven theory about how organizations function and how they change.  One of the more comprehensive and proven theories about organizations is Open Systems Theory.  There are several models based on this theory that have emerged over the past 20-30 years and that characterize the key elements, or subsystems, that make up an organization.  These categories are depicted as elements within an Open System in the model below

 

Once data are collected, an executive summary is prepared for discussion with the executive team, along with a recommended plan of action that includes key milestones, deliverables, change targets, resource requirements, and desired outcomes.  At each step, the executive team is directly involved in planning and executing the change plan in order to ensure the necessary buy-in and ownership and achieve desired outcomes.  Our opinion is that change is successful when top-down driven, and bottoms-up owned.

Our view is that surveys are not drivers for change, but enablers.  Survey data points to aspects of the organization that may or may not align with the company's overall strategic objectives.  Ultimately, it is the responsibility of executive leadership to determine what aspects of the organization will or will not be changed.

Summarized results are shared with employees through various communication channels, and employee reactions and input are incorporated into the change plan to increase commitment to the achievement of desired results.

The Change Action Plan:

The Change Action Plan is tailored to address the key actions required to achieve desired results.  Potential targets for change may include: