Outstanding Regional OD Network Award Winner

MNODN will be recognized at the national OD Conference in Baltimore in October as the Outstanding Regional OD Network! This award was based on creativity in programing, membership involvement and helping to grow the field. Below are the qualifications we presented to the OD Network for the award:

How We Respond to Our Member's Needs

During the past year, MNODN has provided 10 monthly meetings and workshops on a variety of topics including: Taking OD Seriously with David Jamieson, Creating and Engaged Organizations with Dick and Emily Axelrod, Transformational Leadership with Linda Ackerman Anderson, Visual Meetings with David Sibbitt, and some of the local presentations were Social Health Care Reform in England, Leveraging Brain Research, and Building Grass Roots Support for Change.

In addition, MNODN went through a transformational structural change going from a 6 person leadership Board to a 6 person Executive Committee and a 17 person Board of Directors. With the new structure, additional emphasis is on a strategic direction of Engage, Connect and Learn. The new Learning Director is responsible for three new Communities of Practice: Internals Only, Career Development and the Students CoP, a newly formed Program Committee with the charge of providing provocative monthly programs that connect theory with practice, and a connection with the 2011 Regional ASTD Conference to include an OD tract. The newly formed Marketing and Communications Director is responsible for creating a revolutionary social engagement approach using the web, LinkedIn and Facebook to replace our newsletter format. In addition, a peer-review journal will be launched in the fall to address the needs of local students to publish the work they are doing to advance the theory and practice of OD. Partnerships are being strengthened with ASTD, MN Coaches Association, MN Facilitators Association, SHRM and are being tightly coupled with a new media campaign designed to feature MNODN in a prominent way. The new Membership Services Director is creating mixers with a theme such as poster sessions featuring our members. A new position of Student Mentoring and Internship has been created to connect students into MNODN and assist them with their requirements for meaningful internships. Each of the new Board members brings a diverse background. See: http://www.mnodn.org/page-1059385 for a full description of the new board structure.

The strategic direction of MNODN is to secure highly loyal students who will continue their membership and engagement long after they have finished their program. To ensure their increased involvement and attendance at meetings, the programs will shift from afternoon to breakfast meetings.

How We Add Value to a Region

The MNODN has always been a recognized organization for connecting the many senior practitioners with learners in a city of many corporate headquarters. Since hosting the 2005 National ODN conference, the continued engagement of members has continued to grow. Organizational leadership has grown to respect MNODN as a source of excellent programs up to 120 attending many of the monthly meetings. With the recognition that students (undergrad, Masters and Doctoral levels) are the future of MNODN, a strong focus is being created on how to involve students, provide them with meaningful services and rich content, including communicating valuable information in sound-bite social media formats.

An additional strategic direction is the involvement of members who are not able to attend the monthly meetings. With that in mind, our monthly meetings will be down-loadable as pod-casts for a small fee. Interviews with senior practitioners will be available for free as a service to members.

How Our Model Sustains and Grows a Regional Membership Network

As each Board member was recruited, they were asked to bring three things: 1) the energy they were to provide was one of “pay it forward” meaning that all of their efforts were to be considered a contribution to the field, not self-seeking, knowing that in the future another practitioner/member would be also paying it forward; and 2) take their particular area of responsibility and build a team of “peeps” or people they enjoyed working with to carry out their area of responsibilitiesundefinedhave fun while accomplishing something; 3) build the leadership of the people they worked with, constantly looking for the future leadership of the organization. This type of social coupling is seen as important for building a network-type structure that is not dependent on the decisions from the top but building the social capital from all directions.

How We Attract a Diverse Donstituency of Local Practitioners

In the past, MNODN has been seen as a place for external OD consultants to gather. With the new outreach to students and with the creation of Communities of Practice, anyone who has an interest in convening around a topic or a need can do so. Each of the CoP’s are self-organizing and sustainable only as long as the need is being fulfilled. The Internals Only CoP continues to grow as it meets early in the morning and has topics internals wish to have explored. The Career Advancement CoP has monthly presentations on using OD tools and theory for self-development. The Students CoP is tasked with the responsibility of reaching out to the many OD, Change, Leadership and HRD programs in the Twin Cities to create a gathering place for students. Each of these efforts are designed to move away from the externals gathering to include those working in non-profits, government and for profit organizations.

Our Exemplary Leadership

As a Board of 17, the strategic direction continues to evolve. We are determined to be “the place” others go to when wanting to know more about change, strategic leadership, and new theory development such as complexity science and energetics. Each of the leaders on the Board brings a diverse background, a unique contribution and all are committed to grow the organization to a membership of over 500 (currently 400), have all programs so compelling there are 100-150 at each meeting and an amazing energy around Engage, Connect and Learn.

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