No. 22

The Navigator
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Earlier this year, we saw the passing of two exceptional thought leaders in our world of organizational behavior - Dr. Warren Bennis and Dr. Donald Kirkpatrick. Because both of these distinguished scholars have profoundly impacted OSI's philosophy and approach to consulting, I'd like to use this issue of the Navigator to pause and honor their legacy.

It's been said that Warren Bennis was to leadership as Peter Drucker was to management. Dr. Bennis made a profound impact on thinking about the nature and importance of leadership. To illustrate, here are a set of quotes that are so frequently used that we've often forgotten they were original to Dr. Bennis:
  • "The most dangerous leadership myth is that leaders are born - that there is a genetic factor to leadership. This myth asserts that people simply either have certain charismatic qualities or not. That's nonsense; in fact, the opposite is true. Leaders are made rather than born."
  • "Excellence is a better teacher than mediocrity. The lessons of the ordinary are everywhere. Truly profound and original insights are to be found only in studying the exemplary."
  • "Too many companies believe people are interchangeable. Truly gifted people never are. They have unique talents. Such people cannot be forced into roles they are not suited for, nor should they be. Effective leaders allow great people to do the work they were born to do."
  • "Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality."
  • "Managers do things right. Leaders do the right thing."
  • "If knowing yourself and being yourself were as easy to do as to talk about, there wouldn't be nearly so many people walking around in borrowed postures, spouting secondhand ideas, trying desperately to fit in rather than to stand out."
  • "The manager accepts the status quo; the leader challenges it."
  • "No leader sets out to be a leader. People set out to live their lives, expressing themselves fully. When that expression is of value, they become leaders. So the point is not to become a leader. The point is to become yourself, to use yourself completely - all your skills, gifts and energies - in order to make your vision manifest. You must withhold nothing. You, must, in sum, become the person you started out to be, and to enjoy the process of becoming."
  • "Failing organizations are usually over-managed and under-led."
And my own favorite quote...
  • "Text without context is pretext!"
Dr. Donald Kirkpatrick (who came from my home state of Wisconsin) was the author of Kirkpatrick's Four Levels of Training Evaluation: 1. Reaction, 2. Learning, 3. Transfer, and 4. Results. His framework has become the gold standard for evaluating the impact of learning and development programs. Dr. Kirkpatrick's distinguished career included being Professor Emeritus at the University of Wisconsin in the United States and a past president of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD). Many have tinkered with his evaluation approach, but the fundamentals have, and will, endure as his lasting legacy.

It's my opinion that there are fewer and fewer contemporary thought leaders in organizational behavior with the gravitas of Dr. Bennis and Dr. Kirkpatrick. They've become legends and we're now the fortunate beneficiaries of their contributions.

Welcome to Our Newest Polaris® Licensee!

OSI is pleased to welcome Corvias Group, the newest member to the Polaris® License Community.


Happy Holidays!

OSI would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your families an enjoyable holiday season as well as a prosperous New Year in 2015.


OSI Launches Polaris® 4.0

OSI is pleased to announce the official release of our latest competency model content: the Polaris® 4.0 series. This new iteration reflects our most recent research conducted in the past five years with dozens of high performing leaders, managers, and professionals across a number of successful brands. We also included the collective wisdom of our extensive network by doing a reality check with our most seasoned coaches, consultants, and clients. Our update confirmed that the fundamentals of leadership, management, and professional competence are persistent, but did result in several minor changes to the basic model to reflect some nuances we found in how competence really drives results. In addition to updating the Polaris® Competency Model, we have also updated and upgraded the Polaris® Development Guide and Proficiency Continuums to reflect our research and to add more productive ways to acquire needed knowledge and skill. Version 4.0 also includes a highlighted subset of Polaris® competencies (The Big Six) that have been found to predict exceptional performance in front line leadership roles. Polaris® 4.0 is the freshest model on the market, and represents over 33 years of cumulative OSI experience in selecting and developing top talent in top brands. The Polaris® 4.0 universal model can serve as the foundation for talent management systems by providing valid criteria and an integrating language across talent management applications. As research has shown, anything short of this common language sub-optimizes all organizational talent selection, development, and appraisal systems as managers struggle with competing criteria for interviewing, training, and providing performance feedback. Please visit our new website for more information.
OSI 30 Years
At Organization Systems International, we are celebrating over 30 years of quality, service, and innovation. We deliver client success with a high-performance approach designed to enhance occupational relationships, improve operational efficiency, and sustain customer relationships.

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