An OD practitioner is a person who provides professional services i.e. diagnosing systems, developing interventions, and helping to implement them. They refer to at least three sets of people, first those who specialize in OD as professionals and traditionally focus on humanistic values but now include organizational effectiveness and competitiveness.
Second are those who specialize in the field related to OD such as reward system, organizational design, work design, information technology, and business strategy. Third are those people who are managers and administration and gained OD competencies. OD is becoming a general management skill over time.
Practitnioner Skills Profile
Role Demand of OD Practitioner
An effective organization development (OD) practitioner has to be aware of systems wanting to change and be known and available to those needing them. They must know how to match skills with potential client profile and convey qualifications in a credible manner. Their skills are much needed in quickly grasping the nature of the system, determining appropriate decision and processes as needed according to situation and circumstances.
Leaders keep members focused on key company values and on opportunities and need for improvement. A leader’s job is to recognize when a company is headed in the wrong direction and to get it back on the right track. The role of OD practitioner is not just being that leader but also training the managers to be the leaders.
An effective organization development (OD) practitioner must build trusting relationships, present the theoretical foundations of change, deal effectively with resistance, help the client trust the process, and help the client manage emotionally charged feelings and collaboratively design the change process.
The real challenge is to implement a solution to an organizational problem. OD practitioner must not forget about today’s problems yet focus constantly on the next set of problems. He must not just propose solutions but ensure the correct implementation of these solutions.
OD practitioner role is emotionally demanding, he must have the capability which influences personal abilities to succeed in coping with environmental demand and pressure. Self awareness, self management, empathy, social skills and self motivation are all needed requirements of OD practitioner role.
Use of Knowledge and Experience
The role of an OD practitioner can be defined on a continuum ranging from client centered to consultant centered. He must not only direct the managers of the organization but also successfully transfer his/her knowledge and experience to the learners. He must attend to all phases of the business and focus on how the organization works with clients.
With the development of new and varied intervention approaches, the OD professional’s role needs to be seen as falling along the entire continuum from client-centered to consultant-centered. At times, the consultant will rely mainly on organization members’ knowledge and experiences to identify and solve problems. At other times, it will be more appropriate to take on the role of expert, withdrawing from that role as managers gain more knowledge and experience. This is no doubt a very crucial role and needs a lot of practice, expertise and a good command over all tools and techniques to attain complete success.