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Entry and Contracting Phase

An organization refers to the planned coordination of what a number of people with the aim of achieving a common purpose or goal, through the separation of roles with a clear hierarchy of authority (Schein,2010).

The entry and contracting phases are the same for both the internal and external practitioners with just slight variations in the strategies used. Dillon (2003) believes that the entry period should begin only after the consultant has conducted a self-assessment on the realms of skill sets, strengths, expertise as well as the focus of the OD practice. This helps in the prevention of confusion and ambiguity once the process begins.

The entry process should be geared towards building a better relationship between the client and the practitioner. To identify the client, it is safe to assume that in the organization the people want to grow and that the employees have much to offer regarding creativity and energy, with the desire to contribute to the improvement of the organization (Meyer & Botha, 2004). Any person who shows this character is a potential client.Other customers can be identified by first identifying problems such as an increase in absenteeism and constant disputes.Any person who shows the ability to directly impact on the change issues is a client. If for example, the aim of the OD was to increase production in an unionized plant the clients will include the union officials and the staff. Once the client is identified and approached in person, then the problems the organization is identified through extensive consultation. The current functioning of the organization is first identified and the issues to be changed or improved are addressed. Rapport should be created between the consultant and the clients. Careful attention to their inputs will make them contribute more to the problem at hand. As the consultant, it is also important to appear strong, wise and ready to act on the resolutions that will be agreed upon. There will be thorough dialogue with each issue being looked at from several perspectives so that only an effective resolution is made. Each input has to be discussed and if not feasible then whoever contributes the point should be politely informed that the input might not work. A single person should not dominate the discussion. Once the diagnosis has been done, then the contracting phase begins.

In the contracting phase, the interventions are written down and agreed upon by the consultant and the clients. In the case of the product development and product services, the client would be the managers of the firm since hey drive the production process. At the initial meeting, I would ask for their shared expectations, what they expect would be the outcome of the improvements we intend to make as well as their views of each side concerning the resources to be used. Asking me to make the decision on their behalf would be unacceptable.In order to have a fruitful resolution when organization development is concerned the resolution has to reflect on the contribution of all parties involved (Woodcock & Francis,1981). A SWOT analysis would go a long way in identifying the product upgrade effectiveness as well as the identification of a new customer base. The roles to be played by both parties would also be clearly outlined only after a negotiation with both parties. The party which is in better contact with the customers will have to assist the other party by demonstrating how it is easily able to send the upgrades to the counterparts or even advice on the type of employees to be targeted, who charge less for their services. There has to be a mutual agreement on the proposals. Data collection, and the method used for getting feedback has to be determined. The personal approach that careful data collection allows, such as permanent evaluation of clients’ preferences, has become central to the product experience (Morey, Forbath, & Schoop, 2015). Any aspect of the contract that can be renegotiated or terminated will also be identified.

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