Read this before wasting time on an organizational assessment

By William Seidman Organizational assessments are practically a given. Why wouldn’t you want to methodically inventory what works and what doesn’t and, then, what to do about it – planning how to get from “What Is” to “What We Want”? The fundamental building block of neuroplasticity, the idea that “neurons that fire together wire together” is explored well by UCLA research psychiatrist Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz and science writer and Newsweek Senior Editor Sharon Begley, who suggest that organizational assessments may be counter-productive. What’s wrong with organizational assessments?

  • Emphasis is placed on what people in the organization are doing wrong
  • Emphasis is placed on what the organization is doing wrong
  • Neural pathways associated with undesirable behaviors and attitudes are reinforced, making them stronger and more difficult to overcome
  • The fixes tend to be incremental rather than inspirational. There is no vision – just another “To Do” list.
What about a different approach – and one that is supported by good research? Focus exclusively on how to do things right. Who cares what people are currently doing? Let’s focus completely and intensely on the desired state. The most desirable pathways are stimulated and visonary change becomes possible. It works.]]>

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