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How to Become an Integral Organisation

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By Michael Fox, ID Senior Consultant

As they become increasingly aware of the interconnection of human beings, the natural world and the challenges of issues like global warming, the employees of the 21st century want their work to be more meaningful. They want to feel they are doing something worthwhile and to rise to global challenges. They want to feel that they belong and that they make a real contribution to the larger organisation. They want to enjoy the support and stimulation of working in a team that communicates well, addresses internal conflicts and celebrates its successes. They want their organisation to be more integrated, thus facilitating the connection of their inner world with their outer world, a world that keeps expanding in their awareness.

So, how do organisations address these issues and cater for their employees in the 21st century workplace, whilst surviving in increasingly competitive global markets?

A good start is the Integral Organisational Survey, an instrument developed by Integral Development to help organisations understand and respond to the way their employees are experiencing the workplace. As it picks up on the workplace aspirations of employees, the Integral Organisational Survey reflects the organisation much as a multifaceted mirror, providing feedback to management and staff and facilitating a clear and comprehensive view of the organisation.

What is so Special about the Integral Organisational Survey?

When compared with other ‘climate and culture surveys’, one of the most attractive aspects of the Integral Organisational Survey is that, informed by Integral Theory and the best of organisational development theory, it is based upon a comprehensive view of human and organisational development. The Integral Organisational Survey then translates this into a balance of very practical measures that describe what an ideal organisation looks like. Over the past twenty-five years, Integral Development’s Dr Ron Cacioppe has drawn upon the insights of Ken Wilber and his Integral Theory and applied these to leadership and organisational development. The result is the reunification of Heart and Spirit with Head and Hands as highly relevant in the development of the 21st century workplace. In accord with Integral Theory, the Integral Organisational Survey measures organisational performance and development at all levels in four quadrants: effectiveness, efficiency, culture and wellbeing (see Fig 1).

Figure 1 The Four Quadrants of the Integral Organisational Indicator in the Integral Organisational Survey

To date, the Integral Organisational Survey has been conducted with more than 130 organisations and more than 20,000 participants. With these significant numbers, we are able to provide meaningful ‘blind’ comparison of the performance of other organisations – a very useful benchmarking exercise for highlighting organisational strengths. Further, retrospective comparison of your organisation is possible in follow-up surveys to facilitate clear identification of progress against performance goals.

Integral Development works closely with its client organisations to identify their survey objectives and ensure that the survey questionnaire designed for them will deliver the feedback they want. Once subscribed to by your organisation and specifically tailored by Integral Development, the Integral Organisational Survey can be completed online and, if any staff members do not have access to a computer, the option of completing a paper-based survey is available. Upon completion of the Integral Organisational Survey, Integral Development staff analyse the results and provide the necessary feedback, reports and recommendations, whilst Integral Development’s executive coaches support managers throughout the implementation of agreed action plans.

The Integral Organisational Survey is a powerful instrument that facilitates improvement to the benefit of organisations, their employees, customers and the global community. For further information about the Integral Organisational Survey, contact our Senior Consultant Michael Fox at < Michael@integral.org.au >.

Michael Fox

Michael brings to the consultant role a blend of experience in the corporate, not-for-profit and consultancy arenas. His corporate experience leads him to be attuned to the importance of strategy with its operational, commercial, and cultural dimensions, while his not-for-profit experience makes him very aware of the community service dimension of organisations.

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