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OD Intervention Success Indicators
Once it is determined that a change has been implemented and is effective, attention is directed at institutionalizing the changes and making them a permanent part of the organization's normal functioning. Lewin described change as occurring in three stages: unfreezing, moving, and refreezing.

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Institutionalizing an OD intervention concerns refreezing. It involves the long-term persistence of organizational changes: to the extent that changes persist, they can be said to be institutionalized. Such changes are not dependent on any one person but exist as a part of the culture of an organization. This means that numerous others share norms about the appropriateness of the changes.

Indicators of Institutionalization

Institutionalization is not an all-or-nothing concept but reflects degrees of persistence of an intervention. The extent to which the following factors are present or absent indicates the degree of institutionalization.

1. Knowledge. This involves the extent to which organization members have knowledge of the behaviors associated with an intervention. It is concerned with whether members know enough to perform the behaviors and to recognize the consequences of that performance.

2. Performance. This is concerned with the degree to which intervention behaviors are actually performed.

3. Preferences. This involves the degree to which organization members privately accept the organizational changes. This contrasts with acceptance based primarily on organizational sanctions or group pressures. Private acceptance usually is reflected in people's positive attitudes toward the changes and can be measured by the direction and intensity of those attitudes across the members of the work unit receiving the intervention.

4. Normative consensus. This focuses on the extent to which people agree about the appropriateness of the organizational changes. This indicator of institutionalization reflects how fully changes have become part of the normative structure of the organization. Changes persist to the degree members feel that they should support them.

5. Value consensus. This is concerned with social consensus on values relevant to the organizational changes.

These five indicators can be used to assess the level of institutionalization of an OD intervention. The more the indicators are present in a situation, the higher will be the degree of institutionalization.

Thomas Cummings and Christopher Worley, Organization Development and Change, South-Western Publication. You can obtain this fine book here

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