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COMM 251 Lecture Notes - Vision Statement, Situation Awareness, Capacity Building

6 pages42 viewsWinter 2013

Course Code
COMM 251
Alex Ng

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Orgs are growing (or shrinking) and are struggling with effectiveness. Org needs to
stay relevant to the needs of the field. Political context and funding patterns are
always changing.
Organizational Development: “is a system wide application of behavioral
science knowledge to the planned development and reinforcement of
organizational strategies, structures, and processes for improving an
organization’s effectiveness”
- Process includes: the self assessment, the peer review and the
environmental scan (SWOT analysis) leads to identifying the changes that
need to take place and how the changes will be implemented (by whom, by
when, how)
- External Alignment: does the org adhere to national/international
standards in the way it operates? Are the requirements being met?
o Adherence to the Code of Conduct: 10 principles of the Code of Conduct:
1) The humanitarian imperative comes first, 2) Aid is given regardless of
the race, creed or nationality, aid priorities are calculated on the basis of
need alone, 3) we shall respect culture and custom, 4) Relief aid must
strive to reduce future vulnerabilities to disasters, 5) we shall recognize
disaster victims as dignified humans, not hopeless objects
o Adherence to the key values, Evaluation by other agencies, Policies and
practices, Governance, Quality and Performance, Self Review Process
- Internal Assessment:
o Peer review process: An external “team” of peers take a look at the self
assessment and provide their perspectives, feedback and input. Identify an
action plan for change. (ONLY big well funded agencies can afford to make
this a formal process on a regular basis, in smaller agencies it is an informal
o Self-Review: (focus groups, surveys, in-depth interviews) 5 Q’s (What is
our missions, who is our customer, what does the customer values, what
are our results, what is our plan, where are we now, where should we
be/where do we want to be?) Often conducted in the senior management
level. Everything is done for the donor
After self-peer review use SWOT analysis to make changes
o Detailed Internal Assessment: (done on a broader level including most
employees) Aspirations, Strategy, Organizational Skills, Human Resources,
Systems and Infrastructure, Organizational Structure and Culture (“family”
type of culture doesn’t work within big organizations over 70 ppl)
Why is change important in International Development? Change is constant,
change in locations, change in staff, change in funding, change in
o Participatory process of change: ownership of the change
- Before a meeting: arrange room, set time, create a detailed agenda
- Plan meetings in advance, pre-notify attendees about what will be discussed
(the goals), control the discussion, summarize and record discussions
o 1) Plan: Don’t waste time. Have an agenda. What was the meeting intended
to achieve. Prepare yourself what the meeting is for.
o 2) Inform: make it clear to everybody. Everyone has to be on the same
page. Make sure everyone knows what you want from the meeting
o 3) Prepare: the time allocation and place
o 4) Structure and control: discussions should have structure. Structure
discussions in stages (keep the stages separate). Stop having people going
back and forth. Make discussions step by step (on topic after the other)
o 5) Summarize the record: failure to record discussions is a problem
- What if you are not in control of the meeting?
o Get minutes of previous meeting to determine if it is worth your time
attending (if meetings aren’t being taken-suggest that they are)
o Ask for a copy of the agenda prior to attending
o Set your own expectations for meetings
o Accept that contacts are often the most important part of a meeting
o Some meetings you must attend: security, donor
Burnout is described as “a syndrome of emotional exhaustion and cynicism that
occurs frequently among individuals who do ‘people work’ of some kind.
What causes Burnout?
Direct exposure to death and trauma
Quantity of work (hours in excess of a normal 40 hour work week)
Physical and Social Isolation
Inability to control immediate environment
Fear for personal safety
Need to make life-altering decisions for others
Symptoms can be physical, emotional, behavioural or attitudinal
Headaches, intestinal problems or difficulty sleeping.
Emotional symptoms may include anger, frustration or extreme over
or under reaction to events.
Poor performance coupled with increased risk taking behaviour and
an unwillingness to take time off.
Cynicism towards their organization or line of work and distrust of
those around them.
Elements of Leadership:
Leadership style:
How does leader treat staff?
How are decisions are made and
How are staff motivated, assisted, and
Moral leadership
How does the leader act, inspire staff,
create sense of vision, transmit own
personality and vision and values?
Management skill
Practical abilities needed to organize and
carry out programs, policies, and
Strategic Planning??
“Strategic planning is not an end in itself, but merely a set of concepts
to help leaders make important decisions and take important actions.”
Strategic plans should lead to actions, results and evaluation (p. 48 )
Strategic planning is a PROCESS that identifies what an agency will do
AND will not do.
Strategic planning Process:
1. Initiating and agreeing on strategic planning process
2. Identifying organizational mandates
3. Clarifying organizational mission and values
Includes stakeholder analysis
4. Assessing external environment, opportunities & threats.
5. Assessing internal environment, opportunities & threats
6. Identifying the strategic issues facing an organization
7. Formulating strategies to manage issues
8. Establishing effective organizational vision for the future
Source: Strategic Planning for Public and Nonprofit Organizations
After completing your SWOT analysis, ask yourself these questions:
1. How can I use my strengths to enable me to take advantage of the
opportunities I have identified?
2. How can I use these strengths to overcome the threats identified?
3. What do I need to do to overcome the identified weaknesses in order to take
advantage of the opportunities?
4. How will I minimize my weaknesses to overcome the identified threats?

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