The New OD – Have you noticed the changes?

by Jan Yuill

A colleague of mine just asked me what I meant by social media being the new OD.* It was a comment I made in passing, and it deserves some explanation.

I didn’t really mean the new OD, but… in a way, I did. There is no widely accepted definition of Organization Development, so I hesitate to offer one here, but, to me, those two words say it all… OD is simply the development of organizations and everything that is associated with that. Change. Growth. People. Prosperity. Resources. Systems and processes. Vision. Satisfied customers. Etc. Etc.

Online marketing and social media are changing it all.

Think of Egypt. Within a few weeks they were self-organized on Facebook. A Maytag customer (@dooce) acquired over 1.5 million followers after she tweeted about the breakdown of her washer. Purchases are made worldwide at all hours of the day. An online store is just as important as a local store. Amazon is now reporting that they are selling more ebooks than print books. People want things now (more than ever), and it is possible to offer products (virtual) and services immediately.

Leadership and management will change whether they want to or not.

I find it very exciting. So much red tape and nonsense can and will be stripped away.

But it is still early. Many people do not want to go the online route for business and networking. But unless we run out of electricity, I don’t think things are going to go back to the way they were.

What do you think?