Organisation development

Achieve lasting behavioural change so that you can grow together towards a High Performance Organisation

Some organisations function very well and yet a downward spiral of negative thoughts and complaints can still arise. Just compare it to a beautiful holiday destination where you have already spent some time. At the beginning, you thought the views were fantastic, but now you don’t even bother to take the tourist route and grumble about the slow driver in front of you. You’ve forgotten that you’re on holiday to enjoy yourself. The most experienced trainers from COURIUS offer organisation development at the highest level with the Connection Quotient.

Sustainable change

Specialists in achieving real, sustainable (culture) change

Certified and extremely experienced

Only trainers and consultants with years of management experience

Proven success

Working for a number of companies including Capgemini, Engie, ING and various SMEs

Organisation development: Work on the emotional infrastructure


In a similar way, people can forget why work is of value within an organisation. Time and energy are no longer spent on an organisation culture where employees are involved with the product and the goals of the organisation.

Creating an atmosphere is not a rational process. For example, it’s simply not enough for the CEO to fill his New Year’s speech with facts and figures about the importance of working in a customer-oriented way. He needs to tell his employees what the company stands for – passionately and with conviction.

Telling such a story starts by answering the question: what impact does the organisation want to make on society? This question is also relevant when taking on new staff. Make a conscious effort to keep asking new employees why they want to work for the organisation.

Our vision on organisation development


In order to get the entire organisation moving in a purposeful way and to keep it moving, COURIUS works on the basis of the organisation’s reason for existence (the whys and wherefores) and the vision, mission, goals and results related to this (Golden Circle by Simon Sinek). We connect all the layers and levels of the organisation to its reason for existence and its goal.

To be able to really understand the system and to get it moving, we also look at the organisation at a deeper level. Lay the responsibility where it belongs and create ownership. A person’s behaviour is largely ruled by the unconscious mind. Becoming aware of this each time with each individual employee is the first step In a change process of the whole organisation.

Organisation development is inextricably entwined with leadership and personal leadership where people, on the basis of a new consciousness, take control of their behaviour and develop their personal skills to a higher level. Insight into human capital at an individual, team, group and management level is essential. Everyone can contribute to the achievement of goals and results for the organisation from their own position in the organisation.

However, organisation development will only have any effect if it is well supervised. The commitment of the decision-makers and managers in the organisation is necessary to be able to support and implement the consequences of the developments.

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Did you know that all our trainers/consultants have held demanding managerial positions? They have seen for themselves how essential the emotional aspect of collaboration is.

Story telling: the anchor of the emotional infrastructure


Telling a story creates more connection within an organisation than summing up the facts. Even if the story doesn’t have an underlying message, it creates an air of relaxation and a sense of connection. The founding of an organisation is an important story. Why did the founder want to start up the company? What was it about the market at that time that frustrated him? Take the story about the founder of the Bodyshop. Her frustration about the way in which cosmetics were produced at that time generated the motivation behind her new organisation. This kind of story with its underlying values gives employees of an organisation a reason, even many years later, to join in and  fully commit themselves.

In addition, it is very important to apply at least the following five basic principles.

  • Tell stories that are sincere. Don’t exaggerate and don’t make them more colourful than they are. Honesty is the best policy.
  • Don’t be afraid to show your vulnerable side. Be specific about how the event you are talking about has affected you, which personal issues this evokes and how this has formed you.
  • Let your story resonate with passion and wonder. Go in search of what you are proud of.
  • Give compliments. You achieve results in collaboration.
  • One key message and one key word. What do you hope to achieve by telling this story? Repeat the message and the key word several times.

Employees: yet another organisational change?


How many changes can employees cope with? They are witness to a high turnover among their managers due to promotion, reorganisations or dismissal. Each time, they are expected to follow the new direction with boundless energy, including all the associated activities. There is a danger that employees will become resigned. They will start suffering from Repetitive Change Syndrome … But let there be no mistake about it; change is crucial for every business. After all, one of the five essential elements of High Performance Organisations is continual improvement and innovation (see below). But it doesn’t make sense to change at a punishing rate if the employees are no longer able or willing to comply. In that case, you will achieve no more than a cosmetic change. Just like a plastic surgeon who can change the outer part of the patient, but not the inner part. If you want to achieve real change, then the staff in the company are crucial.

The trick is to convince employees in one respect of the necessity and in the other respect to keep highlighting the rewarding prospects.

A few tips:

  • Make rigorous cuts in the current project planning of the organisation. Explain this to employees. New choices will have to be made.
  • Create a dashboard to follow what your staff are still able to cope with. Regular Employee Engagement Surveys/Employee Satisfaction Surveys provide insufficient insight into this.
  • Give employees the opportunity to discuss and seek solutions in preparing for the changes as much as possible. And not just the clever ones who are always being asked. Difficult? Yes. But it will provide a degree of acceptance within the crucial middle group.

The key to change management: connection


Seventy percent of the change processes fail. This is due, amongst others, to the top-down management (usually one-way communication) of many change processes. Somewhere at the top of an organisation, someone decides that something must change. Someone else thinks up a new structure and this is subsequently rolled out. The management and the staff are involved as little as possible. After all, they’ll only come up with tough questions at the expense of decisiveness. A recent trend in implementing change involves the creation of a flatter organisation . This means that there are fewer interconnecting management layers, which enhances communication between the staff, managers and those at the top … really?

Unfortunately, in practice, the flat organisational structures do not appear to lead to more connection and better results. People forget that a flatter structure also requires a different culture and that this usually meets with opposition.

Not thought up at the top


In addition, it is important for changes within organisations to originate from a mission. A clear mission motivates, provides focus and connects people. A clear mission is not only thought up at the top, but comes about through dialogue and interaction in all layers of the organisation. And, as far as we are concerned, this also applies to devising and carrying out organisational changes.

What determines whether you are a High Performance organisation?


André de Waal has carried out extensive research into the characteristics of High-Performance Organisations (HPOs). These are organisations that achieve better financial and non-financial results than similar organisations by concentrating on what is really important in a disciplined manner.

De Waal discovered 5 characteristics that determine whether an organisation is an HPO or can become one.

1 Quality of the management

This is not about how smart the manager is or whether he can formulate a good strategy, but about how he handles the human side of management. Are the managers reliable and are they seen as such? How do they deal with complex decisions? Are they really able to listen?

2 Openness and decisiveness

It goes without saying that people within High Performance Organisations engage in an open dialogue: between management and the employees and between the employees themselves. In the event of mistakes, they explore together what can be learned from this. Experiments are in fact continually being carried out within HPOs. This is an important aspect of the organisation culture: it prevents ‘terminal seriousness’. An HPO also gives employees responsibility. Apart from hands, they also have brains which they like to use.

3 Long-term focus

Short-term gains yield very little in the long run. Collaboration is needed to hold on to clients in the long term, including collaboration with the clients themselves. How do they see the organisation? Can they see opportunities to improve collaboration? To grow and develop together. This requires courage from the managers because there is always continuous pressure to achieve short-term results.

4 Continual improvement and innovation

High Performance Organisations are innovators within their specialist field. They also continue to look at the products and services delivered with a critical eye. They don’t wait for clients to start complaining or for the market to shake, but think actively about what is necessary in the long term.

5 Quality of the employees

Managers in High Performance Organisations know that  money is not the only motivating factor for employees; they also want to develop as individuals. For this reason, they not only invest in work-related training and education, but also devote time, money and attention continually to personal and team development.

What is the HPO standard of your organisation? And where would you like the organisation to be?

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What does COURIUS do besides organisation development?

COURIUS doesn’t just focus specifically on Organisation Development, but also on Leadership Development, Team Development and Business Coaching.