American University of Beirut

Organizational Transformation Readiness

Why Organizations Fail?

“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change." (Charles Darwin)

Change that defeats empires and civilizations, also challenges organizations that try to balance their survival between stability and disruption until they fail.  Why do they fail and what can we do about it? 

​We try to answer those questions in an evening course where we learn of the realities of work and change. The course will be delivered at the American University of Beirut, Continuous Education Program

​Course Objectiv​es

The purpose of this course is to highlight the impact of the changes in work ecosystems on the wellbeing of the workplace and to propose a realistic approach to help organizations develop their abilities to adapt and survive.

​Course Bri​​efing

By the end of this course participants will know of the importance of building the organizational alertness and understanding of change. They will learn of: Work, Structure, Leadership, Talent and Processes as the pillars of a model (founded on the concepts of the Requisite Organization theory of E. Jaques), that supports and drives organizational adaptability and transformation. 

The course is 40 hours, composed of 6 modules delivered in 10 sessions

​​Course Co​​​ntent

  • Module 1- Introduction, session1: Explains the importance of understanding change and of learning how to adapt to it, and introduces Work as the first component of the Organizational Transformation Readiness Model (OTR).
    • Change: The primary byproduct of the time continuum. How it impacts our survival and why organizations ultimately fail to learn and adapt.
    • Model Overview: A snapshot of the course and of the proposed OTR Model.
    • Work: The first component of the Model and central part of an organization. The heart that pumps life through its bloodstream and delivers its value propositions to its clients.
  • Module 2- Requisite Organization Theory, sessions 2&3: Introduces the Requisite Organization Theory and explores the conceptual base of the Model.
    • Science, discoveries and propositions: The unique findings of six decades of research on the natural way of human interaction to deliver work in hierarchal organizational formations, along with validated solutions to the problems that those formations struggle with.
  • Module 3- Structure, session 4: Introduces Structure as the second component of the Model.

The work delivered by an organization is a composite of the works done by all its people that have different levels of capabilities and are assigned to different types of task complexities. Understanding those levels and complexities is essential for building a structure that can drive optimal performance. 

    • Levels of Work (LoW): Work complexity types and levels fall into a specific pattern of stratified layers.  
    • Time Horizons: The capabilities of people to resolve work complexities also fall into a specific pattern that can be paralleled with the LoW layers. Understanding this parallelism optimizes people placements and builds organizational effectiveness.  
    • Levels of Leadership: Each of the stratified organizational layers has particular characteristics of driving work, which allows the whole set of layers to act in an interconnected and complementary fashion.
    • Vertical accountability tract and Lateral Relations: Structural effectiveness is achieved by upholding accountability on the vertical line of the functional groups, and by clarifying and enhancing the lateral relationships between those groups.
  • Module 4- Leadership, sessions 5, 6&7: Introduces Leadership as the third component of the Model.

Managerial competence and thoughtfulness are key components for building a culture of trust that drives the top-down governance flow at equal footing with the bottom-up feedback flow.

    • Particular managerial duties: Understanding the effect of a set of (12) managerial practices and applying them establishes a cohesive and solid managerial leadership across all sections of the organization. 
    • The Talent Pool: An organization's perpetuation depends on the validity of its succession plan that ensures the existence of a healthy stream of future leaders. Acts as an indicator of the organization's leadership effectiveness and wellbeing. 
  • Module 5- Talent, session 8: Introduces People and their Talent as the fourth component of the Model.

The overall organizational performance is the culmination of the work of its people. Understanding the elements of people capabilities and their nature is essential to correctly develop and deploy the human capital.  

    • Motivation: People applying their full potential depends on their willingness and ability to do the work assigned to them.
    • Activation: Individual talent performance effectiveness is influenced by managerial competence and proper structural composition.
    • Talent Pool: A relevant Talent Pool requires identifying and mapping of the current and future potentials with the critical positions in a timely manner.
  • Module 6- Processes, session 9: Introduces Processes as the fifth component of the OTR Model.

Processes tie up all the other components of the model and converts them into an actionable reality.

    • Effective work patterns: Efficiency of organizational output can be enhanced by identifying work patterns and converting them into an order of self-initiating activities and processes.
    • Alignment of multiple workgroups: Processes enable coordinating the activities of different functional groups without compromising accountability and control. They enable the implementation of plans and drive systematized work flows in different timeframes.
    • Transforming activities into routines: They allow converting the OTR Model form a one-time project into a sustainable set of protocols that warrant the survival of the organization.
    • Establishing readiness: Finally, introducing self-triggering tools and measures allows building the alertness and preparedness of the organization to move swiftly into a Transformation mode whenever the changing circumstances warrant the need for adaptation.
  • Students' Final Evaluation, session 10:
    • Each student prepares a short presentation of her/his understanding of organizational transformation and of the key propositions of the model.

​Target Audience

Senior and middle managers
Business owners/entrepreneurs
Human resources professionals
Students of HR Graduate Studies

American University of Beirut | CEC Corporate Programs
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