Assignment: Concepts From Developmental Theory

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Assignment: Concepts From Developmental Theory

Assignment: Concepts From Developmental Theory

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Use the internet to locate a lesson, exercise, assignment, activity, or lesson plan that provides an example of an application of one of the concepts from cognitive developmental theory reviewed in Module Four. This should be an actual lesson or activity that would work in a classroom.

In your journal, include the following:

  • A description of the lesson or activity as well as the age range or developmental stage targeted by the lesson
  • The theory and concept demonstrated by the lesson
  • A reflection on how the assignment, lesson, or exercise demonstrates the cognitive developmental theory and if it will actually promote or impact cognitive developmentAs discussed above, and as Hantula et al. (1991) have noted, OD and OBM exhibit similarities and differences in their approach to organizational change. Critical elements of OD and recent work accomplished within the OBM field that might provide the basis of active reciprocation between the two fields is now considered. The comparison begins with the ways in which OBM might enhance the goals of OD.What OBM Can Offer OD

    Balanced Process and Outcome Emphasis

    A consistent theme of OD has been a process-based approach to organizational change. This is evident in process consultation (Schein, 1988) and in definitions of OD(e.g., Burke, 1982; French and Bell, 1990), as well as in recent calls for OD to be more relevant to leaner, flatter, strategically oriented organizations proposed to meet the demands of the present and future global marketplace (Beer and Walton, 1990). Few empirical data are available, however, to support one single organizational structure as most effective for all combinations of environment, task, technology, and people. In short, although new OD interventions are said to be required, the focus of this approach is still within the humanistically based context of how people work, not the outcomes of their work per se. Although OD is primarily process-oriented in approach, numerous attempts have been made, as discussed previously, at linking OD to overall outcome measures, such as productivity.

    OBM, on the other hand, focuses on outcomes that workers can influence as primary strategy for intervening in organizations (Komaki, 1986a). Only after a thorough analysis of prevailing contingencies operating with-in the organization, or at least the organizational subunit of interest, does the performance manager begin prescribing intervention strategies to accomplish changes in the target performance. This approach to change that emphasizes outcomes directly under the control of worker behavior is proposed as a first contribution that OBM can offer OD. The technology of targeting and pinpointing behavior (Daniels, 1989), coupled with an analysis of the relationship between individual accomplishments and Organizational mission (Gilbert, 1978), can help balance a sometimes excessive emphasis of OD on organizational processes and place them in a more goal-oriented context.

    Functional Analysis of OD Consultant Behavior

    As previously noted, the existence of an external facilitator/consultant is often listed as a critical element of systematic OD efforts. On the other hand, Beer and Walton (1987) present cogent arguments that OD research has been preoccupied with consultant-centered intervention methods and that there is a need for expansion in the scope of OD consultation as a set of skills possessed by managers, rather than these skills being the sole domain of the external consultant. Given the pervasiveness of change programs that entail extensive consultant involvement, from both internal and external vantage points, there is a need for more systematic investigation of consultant behaviors. Consequently, a second area wherein OBM may significantly impact OD is in determining the critical skills that Differentiate effective from ineffective organizational interventions.

    Previous work was undertaken by the author and his associates (Eu-banks, Marshall, and O’Driscoll, 1990; Eubanks, O’Driscoll, Hayward, Daniels, and Connor, 1990; O’Driscoll and Eubanks, 1992,1993,1994) in an attempt to determine specific consultant behaviors that are likely to lead to desired organizational outcomes. The results of our work yielded six competency categories that represent the range of OD performance in which practitioners engage: contracting, using data, implementation, inter-personal skills, group process, and client relations. Details regarding the process for extracting these categories may be found in Eubanks and colleagues (1990, pp. 83-84). The specific labels for each of the competency categories are based on the judgments of a panel of OD experts. Regardless of whether identification of these categories represents cutting-edge OD related to strategic management, for example, we are concerned with the specific behavioral skills within each category.

    To date, we have used our behavioral observation scale, called the Consultant Competency Inventory (CCI), to collect data from forty-five organizations in the United States and New Zealand that had recently completed OD interventions. As a result of various analyses of our data, we have discovered a limited set of critical practitioner behaviors that seem to reliably predict successful OD intervention outcomes. These behav iors are listed in  according to the original category scheme we developed. Our ultimate objective is to refine this critical consultant behavior set in the manner that Komaki and her colleagues refined their supervisory behavior inventory (Komaki, 1986b; Komaki, Zlotnick, and Jensen, 1986). Similar to the previously mentioned potential of OBM for providing OD with a framework for functional analyses of organizational behavior, clear specification of OD consulting competencies, as they functionally relate to intervention outcomes, should provide a platform for training future practitioners as well as a set of criteria for evaluating existing consultation practices by clients and practitioners alike.

    TABLE 14.2. Critical Consultant Behaviors by Competency Category


    • States clearly what can and cannot be done for the organization

    • Demonstrates verbal and social behavior consistent with the organization’s culture

    • Provides options from which the client can choose

    Using Data
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