OD is About Doing Good

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Several years ago, I was in Chicago on a short vacation.  I looked out the window of our hotel and couldn’t believe what I saw when I read this banner – GO DO, GO OD!  It was such an inspiring message!  I thought to myself that’s what OD is about – doing good!  As an OD professional, I’ve been dedicated to doing good by teaching others about the principles of OD.  Today as I read my horoscope, I was reminded of my true purpose: “What you are doing is inherently important.  The work is what matters, not how popular it is.”

We all have opportunities to do good especially when we are equipped with the principles of Organization Development.  Kurt Lewin, the father of OD, provided us the foundation for leading change – The Action Research Model, Change Model, Force Field Analysis, T-Groups, Culture, Team Dynamics, and Leadership Development.  He believed in the principles of democracy and human interaction.  He shared this knowledge with others who came to identify themselves as OD Practitioners.  Lewin also believed in changing organization effectiveness through leadership commitment and buy-in, employee involvement, support from an internal OD consultant, democratic decision making, joint problem solving and action planning, carefully planned implementation, and shared knowledge.

I’ve had the privilege to work with many leaders, educators, students, and social workers throughout the world introducing them to the field of Organization Development.  I feel strongly about formal OD education and providing OD Practitioners with an OD Certification Process.  In 2002, I founded Institute of OD and began offering OD Certification Programs to help participants advance in their careers.   I’ve also helped colleagues in other countries such as Ghana, India, and Jamaica to help them introduce OD education programs and develop OD Practitioners who can lead change.

Helping others grow in their career is my major goal in my life.  When I hear from participants about what they’ve accomplished after completing their certification – being promoted, finding a new job, advancing their current role – it helps me realize the importance of our OD certification programs.

As I reflect back on my career, I realize that Doing Good, and Doing OD has always been my lifelong passion!

Author:  Dr. Nancy L. Zentis, Founder and CEO of Institute of Organization Development

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