Original Research

The effect of organisational context on organisational development (OD) interventions

Sanjana Brijball Parumasur
SA Journal of Industrial Psychology | Vol 38, No 1 | a1017 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajip.v38i1.1017 | © 2012 Sanjana Brijball Parumasur | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 15 September 2011 | Published: 16 May 2012

About the author(s)

Sanjana Brijball Parumasur, Discipline of Human Resource Management, South Africa


Orientation: Systematic and congruent organisational structures, systems, strategies and designs are necessary for the successful implementation of organisational development (OD) interventions.

Research purpose: This article examines national and international OD practices. It assesses the effect of diverse cultures and cultural values for determining the effectiveness of OD interventions.

Motivation for the study: Most organisational change and development programmes fail and only a few result in increased competitiveness, improvements and profitability. This emphasises the need for change interventions to give sufficient attention to leadership, cultures, managing change and adopting context-based OD interventions.

Research design, approach and method: This article is a literature review of the current trends and research in the area of OD interventions. It synthesises the influence that cultures and cultural orientations have on determining which OD intervention strategies organisations should adopt in different cultures.

Main findings: The analysis emphasises how important it is to achieve congruence between the OD interventions organisations select and their local cultures.

Practical/managerial implications: It is important to note the evolving nature of the political and economic climates that influence national cultures and that they emphasise that interventions that reflect OD values, which are tailor-made and shaped to the needs of local cultures, are necessary.

Contribution/value-add: This study links various OD interventions to Hofstede’s dimensions for differentiating national cultures. It provides guidelines for aligning the practices and techniques of OD to the values and cultures of the organisations and societies in which they are to be implemented.


national culture; power distance; uncertainty avoidance; individualism/ collectivism; masculinity/femininity


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Crossref Citations

1. The influence of organizational culture on performance in public entities of South Africa
Moses M. Gasela
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doi: 10.4102/apsdpr.v10i1.563