Organizational diagnosis is the process of analyzing a company, recognizing what problems the company may have, what strengths the company exhibits, the employees receptiveness to change and how to restructure and implement change to correct any problems. This is done to keep the company from losing money, possibly going under and also to keep the company competitive in a highly competitive marketplace. The process of an organizational diagnosis is generally performed in a few stages. First, the parent company employees a group of external consultants and researchers to visit the company.
The researchers will usually begin their work with a reconnaissance stage. The consultants will spend some time at the organization getting to know the workers and gaining an initial impression of the company and how it operates. This is done by simply spending time talking with employees, observing day to day behavior and speaking with management.
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Following the initial research, the consultants will meet with the organizational clients to develop a written plan of expectations and goals that the organization is wishing to achieve.
Generally, companies will hire the consulting firms because they have a problem or series of problems that they need to correct and are unsure of the best way to implement the change successfully. Consultants are a group of skilled workers that are highly educated in management, human psychology, sociology and organizational behavior. Sometimes it is best to hire a non- biased group of consultants that can observe the company from an external perspective in order to find the best course of action to resolve the problems at hand.
Once the client and consultants have agreed upon a plan of action, the consultants will begin a more in-depth research stage. During this time, consultants will meet with important members of the organization to examine their feelings on change and their perspectives on the consulting project, as well as the proposed change. Consultants may also unobtrusively observe day-to-day tasks among workers and evaluate their communication skills, as well as their interactions.
This will help the researchers develop an understanding of the companies interpersonal and power relations. The conducting of surveys and questionnaires is also a means of gathering information from workers on their stances and viewpoints of the corporation and their thoughts on purposing a change. Researchers will begin a thorough examination of important documents pertaining to the company. These documents can help researchers analyze the organizations strengths and weaknesses, as well as goals and company history.
During the examination and researching process, consultants will quickly learn how important members of the organization are willing to accept and enforce a change. If members of the organization are unwilling to enforce and follow through with change, the consultants will need to restructure their goals and means of achieving these. This prevents setting goals that are unattainable. If an organization is going to resist change, there is no need to spend the time to develop a plan to correct problems.
This realization of the companies inability to accept and implement change will result in a separate set of issues that will need to be corrected. Generally, these types of resistance to change are going to be resolved by a change in personnel and the working staff. This process is designed to prevent setting a plan of attack that will fail, causing the organization to become frustrated when the change is not working, thus setting them further into a hole that they need to dig their way out of.
Once the consultants have spent an adequate amount of time learning about the company and brainstorming ways to successfully implement change, they will develop specific methods of change implementation designed specifically for this particular organization’s culture. These can include specialized training programs, team building projects, job task re-designation, supervisory structure change, changing reward systems and goal achievement programs; just to name a few.
Upon meeting with the company to present their final planned list of changes, as well as the implementation plans, the consultants will observe the company for a few weeks as they begin the process of correcting their issues. The consultants will be on hand to answer any questions that the company may have, as well as assist in solving any problems or roadblocks that the clients may run into. During this time, the researchers are basically a technical support hotline for the customer. They will be on site to help in any way possible.
After a short trial period of change implementation, the customer and the consultants will form a meeting to analyze the effectiveness of the changes that are being carried out. This is a time that is used to fine-tune any processes or bring new ideas to the table to further improve on the companies reformation campaign. Following a predetermined length of time, as well as confidentiality in the companies ability to further carry out the scope of the change campaign, the consultants will vacate the premises. The consultants are available to call and discuss problems and/or ideas to continually improve upon the preconceived plan.
In the months and years following the campaign, the company will further evaluate the effectiveness of the changes that were put in place. The company will either decide that the change process was a success, or they will decide that it needs further work. At this time, it may be in the companies best interest to hire a different consultation firm in order to correct the companies problems. It may be possible that the company will come to realize that there are other problems at play in the corporation that need to be analyzed and corrected.
All of the sources that I have examined and researched, tend to follow the same ideals when it comes to organizational diagnosis and cultural evaluation. A few sources will change the names of the stages, but in effect, they are the exact same processes. Organizational diagnosis is a lot like troubleshooting a problem with any mechanical system. One must recognize the problem, find the source/s of the problem and develop a plan to correct or repair the problem. Unfortunately, when you are dealing with people, instead of mechanical objects, there are a lot more variables as well as unforeseeable pitfalls.
In order to combat the instability of a dynamic corporation, executives, managers and even hourly employees must remain dynamic and receptive to a continually changing atmosphere. A company that tends to stay closed-minded and unreceptive to improvement is generally a short-lived company that will quickly be outdone by a continually changing marketplace. The global marketplace is a highly dynamic and competitive arena. In order for one to stay on top, you must be willing to continually one-up your competitors.