Posts Tagged OTI

Verax International announces new research findings which will be incorporated into its highly advanced organisational change and effectiveness diagnostics too, “Organisational Transitions” (OTI)

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October 9th 2014. Odiham, Hants. Verax International Ltd, as part of its on going research into organisational effectiveness, has, following research, isolated factors involving maturity of an organisation that can apply to organisations of any size and any market sector. The factors are responsible for organisational ineffectiveness in terms of hindering the achievement of corporate goals, customer satisfaction, ability to change and grow, staff retention etc.

The factors will be incorporated into Verax’s organisational change and effectiveness diagnostics tool, Organisational Transitions (OTI) effective from October 8th 2014.

“It is essential for organisations to identify and deal with systemic factors, or organisational de-railers, because they can have up to three times the impact of any positive effectiveness factor,” says Keith Bedingham, Chairman, Verax International.

“They may exist in strategy implementation, leadership, performance management and or in organisation structure, systems, processes and procedures. It’s important to get to the root cause of the reasons they exist and address it.”

Verax’s research revolved around identifying the source of organisational de-railers. Incorporating them into OTI will enable the tool to deliver yet more sophisticated results.

Says Bedingham, “The source is typically an organisation’s maturity level. The level has nothing to do with how long the organisation has been established but more with how the organisation is managed and how it, or its senior managers, responds to external events.

“As organisations become more mature, the de-railers diminish. Organisations have to be managed in order to achieve different levels of maturity. The journey is not necessarily linear and organisations can and do shift from more to less mature levels as well as from less to more.”

Keith Bedingham, Chairman, Verax International

Keith Bedingham, Chairman, Verax International

And Bedingham warns, “With the economic upheavals of the last five years or so, many organisations will have shifted to a less mature state than they might have been enjoyed earlier.”

About the levels of maturity

Low maturity organisations are likely to be focused on “efficiencies”, cost savings, monthly revenues, and compliance. Risk management tends to be ad hoc. Punishment and blame when things go wrong are the reward systems.

Selection is likely to be based on “technical” skills and behavioural fit and based on immediate need. Training and development is incidental, on the job and “technical”. 360 degree tools don’t work due to low levels of trust.

Organisation structure is likely to be hierarchical and siloed.

Decision making is likely to be based on information provided by management and based on limited criteria. Senior managers appear to be more interested in their own self importance with little attention paid to other stakeholders’ interests.

The above attributes mean that immature organisations have difficulty breaking through various plateaux e.g. revenue levels, growth etc. Growth typically occurs through major external investment, mergers/acquisitions or unexpected larger sales. Organisations may not be at the same level on all factors at one time.

Medium Maturity Organisations

Here managers are thinking about at least a five year plan, new market innovations or a new business model.

Management tends to be aligned to longer term objectives. Executive evaluation is part of the culture. Stakeholders and other external influences contribute to decision making. There is common risk assessment based on understanding the causes of risk.

Learning and development becomes more sophisticated including professional use of 360 degree tools, coaching and performance management. Selection is done with an eye to the future.

High Maturity Organisations

Here the concern is to translate business value into societal value. Managers and staff are motivated to serve the needs and objectives of the Company which is being re-shaped for the next 20 years.

Diverse perspectives are sought and used. There are likely to be heavy hitting non execs on the board. Risk is embedded in daily activities, prioritised, evaluated and responded to accordingly.

Organisation structures are likely to be more complex e.g. matrix, partnerships etc. Learning is likely to be based on future organisational needs, involving a mix of approaches including 360 degree tools and coaching, directly aligned to the business aimed at creating appropriate business leaders.

Selection considers potential contribution, especially to growth, change, achievement and sustainability.

Many senior executives believe their organisation to be more mature than it is in reality. This results in frustration, poor management of change and disappointing business results.

For more information please contact Keith Bedingham on telephone +44 (0) 1256 395050 or email

Verax – OTI link


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Leadership – its impact on safety and accidents

Report by Keith Bedingham, Chairman, Verax International.

April 3rd 2013. Sharon Clarke of the Manchester University Business School recently published (March 2013 edition of the Journal of Occupational and Organisational Psychology) her findings on the relationship between Leadership practices and safety behaviour and accidents.

Her findings were based on a study over 5000 people working in hazardous environments. To summarise, Sharon found two types of leadership styles or practices, each of which impacted safety behaviour differently.

(i) Transformational Leadership

 This consisted of: –

– A vision for the future which supports the achievement of safety goals

– Demonstrating in their own behaviour that safety is important.

– Inspiring and encouraging individuals to reach higher safety levels and a “safety voice”  speaking up about safety issues.

– Allowing staff to suggest new and innovative ways (not risky solutions) of reaching safety targets.

– Coaching, caring/demonstrating a concern for employees’ safety and wellbeing.

– Proactively monitoring employees’ behaviour and correcting errors before they lead to problems.

 This led to:

 – Close attention to safety rules and regulations by employees and greater safety compliance.

– Greater trust between managers and their direct reports.

– Greater safety participation.

– Staff prepared to go beyond formal obligations.

– Higher levels of safety performance.

(ii) Transactional Leadership

– Emphasising rule based compliance

–  Active monitoring of staff

-Intervening in a visible way when problems occur

-Providing feedback on errors

-“Walk the talk” about safety

This led to:

– A perceived positive safety climate

– Safety compliance

– Less safety participation

A highly critical and punishment approach i.e. “catch them doing something wrong” was seen to increase the likelihood of accidents and more dangerous safety behaviour.

These findings are interesting in that they chime with Verax research into safety behaviour and as used in our Organisational (OTI) Health & Safety survey and our individual (Personal Effectiveness Profile – PEP) Safety and Wellbeing 360.

Verax found that informal recognition and praise for “good” safety performance was one of the factors most responsible for positive safety behaviour and low accident rates.

From a personal perspective, PEP, Self Presentation (Self Image, Self  Worth, Self Confidence) – all of which could be bolstered by positive recognition – had the most positive impact on individual safety behaviour and on personal accidents, minor illness, and absenteeism.

One conclusion that can be drawn from all these studies is that while organisations can do whatever they can to create safe environments and draw up policies, rules, regulations etc to keep people safe, it is in the interaction between manager and employee that we find the subtle nuances of human attitudes and behaviour that ultimately make the difference between safe/unsafe behaviour, accidents and injury.

Ref.  Clarke. S. Safety Leadership; A meta – analytic review of transformational and transactional leadership styles as antecedents of safety behaviours: Journal of Occupational and Organisational Psychology (2013), 86, 22 – 49


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