Cutting Edge Research in Organizational Transformation

This doctoral research is about a new way to measure transformation of organizational culture based on a type of complexity called vertical complexity. I evaluated all the ways it had been measured over the past 50 years, invented a new method to assess organizations, and tested my assessment with a formal validation study. This approach integrated the wisdom two related disciplines--vertical adult development and organizational development--in a field I call vertical OD.
  • Largest vertical OD study to date - 500,000-person organization, n=2,536
  • Most comprehensive review of vertical OD assessments conducted so far
  • New typology to organize vertical OD assessments by their relative strengths & weaknesses
  • New definition of vertical OD - based on vertical complexity
  • New model of vertical OD - based on group-related tension
  • First time a pattern matching assessment was used in a fixed choice survey
  • First time developmental intuition was sidestepped in a face-valid survey
  • First time complex adaptive systems theory was used to examine vertical complexity in organizations - over 40,000 scatter plot diagrams - led to discovery of the "bleed-through effect"
  • Strongest evidence to date that respondents' own stage of vertical development confounds their assessment of a group they inhabit.
  • First set of guidelines for future research in the vertical OD field

Watch the summary - 30-min presentation + 45-min Q&A
Watch session 1 of 8 - The first 60-minute session of an 8-part deep dive with over 200 consultants and researchers from around the world.
Flip through the deck - 150 slides