Performance management: can the practice ever deliver the policy?

28 March 2011

Duncan Brown examines the evidence on the effectiveness of performance management, and finds that, mostly, the process fails to deliver. He considers the implications of performance management for the NHS in particular, and draws on a range of organisational examples from a variety of sectors to illustrate how performance management can produce the intended effects when processes are well planned, designed with active involvement from line managers, and simple to use.

HR and Organisation Development: what is the relationship? Is it going anywhere?

28 March 2011

In today’s challenging times there is fast growing recognition that Organisation Development (OD) and HR should work together with line managers to produce sustainably high performing and change-able organisations. But quite how this relationship should work is source of great debate. Dr Naomi Stanford outlines key aspects of this debate and offers some challenging propositions. In particular she argues for a raising of standards in both disciplines, and flags up the need for a body dedicated to the professionalising of OD.

Why has organisational development failed people and organisations?

15 February 2011

Martin Saville and James Traeger raise significant questions about the purpose, role and practice of OD. They maintain that OD fails when practitioners are too willing to collude with, rather than challenge, poor practice. They argue strongly for a more courageous approach. This is about seeing OD as a set of values in practice, rather than just a set of clever techniques for getting people to change their behaviour. As they point out, “if we ignore this, we are in danger of becoming a tool of workplace enslavement”.

A new future for Human Resources

15 February 2011

In this article, Stephen McCafferty argues that, in large part, HR has failed to become a strategic business partner. He draws significant lessons for HR from the banking crisis, and challenges HR to invent for itself a better, more significant role, one which puts ethics back into organisational practice and “human” back into human resources.