August 1, 2006
The Same, But Different Mariquita and I spent several hours on the dueling laptops this evening. It turned out, we were both working on OD things (Organization Development). Mariquita’s project, for her Masters’ Program at Amercan U — was writing a lengthy paper on data collection and feedback as a major function of OD, as applied to a specific case of a startup going through growing pains (not Return Path…a case given by the teacher). Her main comment — “they’ve got problems, man.” I was working on an overhaul of Return Path’s management structure and what I call M/O/S (management operating system), based on the results of this year’s 360 Review process. My main comment — “we’ve got problems, man.” Well, not exactly in the same way, but we certainly have some major things to think through and change about the way we operate if we want to get the business to the next level. The main topics were around preparing our organization — in terms of attitude, development, structure, and culture — to be 4x larger than it is today within a few years. Interesting comparison. Both valid uses of OD, totally different applications.