Values, Ethics and assumptions of OD

Values: Standards of importance; such as Integrity, honesty, effectiveness, efficiency, productivity, profitability, service, quality of life. Values are guides about what to pursue and prefer.

Ethics: Standards of good and bad behavior based on values.

Organization Development: Value-based process of improving individuals, relationships, and alignment among organizational components to enhance the effectiveness of the organization and the quality of life of its members, to better serve the organization’s purpose and its fit with the organization system of which the organization is a subsystem


  1. LIFE AND THE QUEST FOR HAPPINESS: People respecting, appreciateng, and loving the experience of their own and others’ being while engaging in search for and the process of co-creating a good life.
  2. FREEDOM, RESPONSIBILITY AND SELF-CONTROL: People experiencing their freedom, exercising it responsibly, and being in charge of themselves.
  3. JUSTICE: People living lives whose results are fair and equitable


  1. Participation, involvement and empowerment
    This may be the most fundamental value we hold as OD practitioners. We know that “people support what they help create.” Therefore, we encourage our clients to see the benefit of involving all organizational members in decision-making and change processes as appropriate.

2. The importance of groups and teams
Organizations are made up of a variety of formal and informal groups and teams. Therefore, we encourage clients to recognize the norms and beliefs that come along with these structures in order to help those groups and teams contribute most effectively to the organization.

3. Growth, development and learning
As OD practitioners, we have an optimistic view of people and teams. Therefore, we believe that our work with organizations should  help people to learn the skills needed to help them navigate change in the future.

4. Valuing the whole person
In order to help individuals maximize their potential in an organiztion, we respect that people are complex. Therefore, we work hard to understand individuals have diverse needs, skills, and feelings and respect those differences in our work with them.

5. Dialogue and collaboration
Conflict is inevitable in teams and organizations. Therefore, we believe in using dialogue to address conflict in a healthy, open manner in order to move past the dysfunction that suppressed conflict can create.

6. Authenticity, openness and trust
In order to create trusting environments, organizational leaders and members must consistently demonstrate honesty and transparency in their words and actions. As OD practitioners, we must model this at all times.

7 Basic OD Assumptions that are based upon French and Bell

  1. Most individuals have drives towards personal growth and development. However, the work habits are a response to work environment rather than personality traits. Accordingly, efforts to change work habits should be directed towards changing how the person is treated rather than towards attempting to change the person.
  2. Highest productivity can be achieved when the individual goals are integrated with organizational goals. Also with such integration, the quality of the product is highly improved.
  3. Cooperation is more effective than competition. Conflict and competition tend to erode trust, prohibit collaboration and eventually limit the effectiveness of the organization. In healthy organizations, “efforts are made at all levels to treat conflict as a problem subject to problem solving methods.
  4. The suppression of feelings adversely affects problem solving, personal growth and satisfaction with one’s work. Accordingly, free expression of feelings is an important ingredient for commitment to work.
  5. The growth of individual members is facilitated by relationships, which are open, supportive and trusting. Accordingly, the level of interpersonal trust, support and cooperation should be as high as possible.
  6. The difference between commitment and agreement must be fully understood. Agreeing to do something is totally different from being committed to do something. Sense of commitment makes it easy to accept change and the implementation of change for the purpose of organi­zational development is even easier when such a commitment is based upon participation in the process.
  7. OD programmes, if they are to succeed, must be reinforced by the organization’s total human resources system.

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