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Organization Development Symposium: Meaning-Centered Organization Development Practices

Key macro indicators pertaining employee engagement (Gallup), trust in leadership (Edelman), and happiness at work (Dr. Barry Schwartz; United Nations Happiness Report) remain stubbornly in negative terrain. There is a growing recognition in the field of organizational development (OD) that current practices are not having the desired effect of releasing human potential within organizations – be it in business, nonprofit volunteer organizations, and governments. Given this situation, a big shift toward meaningful work is taking place. It can be said that the field of organization development is returning to its social justice roots, promoted by the founder of OD, Kurt Lewin, also the pioneer of Social Psychology. Yet, this promising shift will not be enough to bring about lasting change unless archaic systemic forces and the assumptions that sustain them are confronted and replaced with more science-based alternatives.

This symposium explores the various ways in which organization development researchers and practitioners utilize emerging constructs of meaning and purpose to organize and motivate employee engagement, performance, and fulfillment. Some of the key themes and questions being considered include:

  1. Are there systemic forces stymieing societies and their organizations from solving fundamental problems? And if so, what solutions can best tackle the gridlock?

  2. How can organizations monitor meaningfulness and productivity measures?

  3. What challenges may organizations face in using meaning-centered models?

  4. How best to promote meaning-centered approaches to organizational leaders?

Panel participants will share some of the most significant challenges facing organizational leaders and change agents today and offer promising solutions to improve engagement through meaning-centered methods. In alphabetical order, panel participants include:

  1. Eileen Dowse, Organizational Psychologist, President of Human Dynamics, and award-winning author of The Naked Manager: How to Build Open Relationships at Work

  2. Jim Rough, Director and Founder of the Center for Wise Democracy and author of the book “Society’s Breakthrough! Releasing Essential Wisdom and Virtue in all People.”

  3. Luis A. Marrero, Symposium Chair and facilitator. CEO, Boston Institute for Meaningful Purpose. Award-winning author of “The Path to a Meaningful Purpose: Psychological Foundations of Logoteleology” and pioneer of Second Wave Organization Development (OD 2.0).

  4. Shizuka Modica, Professor of Organizational Behavior and Leadership. Kyoto College of Graduate Studies for Informatics. Adjunct Faculty, Darden School of Business, University of Virginia.

Join meaning-centered Organization Development Consultants and Coaches at the 10th Biennial International Meaning Conference in Vancouver, Canada!  Register through the following link:

Luis A. Marrero,  M.A., RODP, LLP

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