The evaluation of management development using a choice-based consultancy tool : exploring the relevance of the learning organisation model
This Doctor of Education thesis uses Action Research to address the means which organisations can use to evaluate the impact of management development on their organisations. The author has devised a choice-based consultancy tool, the Yates Options Model for Evaluation which, amongst other things, incorporates the concept of the learning organisation as a key element and, using action research procedures, the thesis explores and confirms the value of this concept in the process of evaluating organisational effectiveness. By using the consultancy tool to carry out evaluation in two organisations, one public and one private, insights are drawn into the consultancy process itself, the value of the Model and the way in which action research serves to illuminate both. Each organisation made its choices within the Model and studies of staff opinion were carried out to establish where the organisation lay in terms of the development of the learning organisation. All of the experiences of carrying out those studies formed the research data along with interviews with key participants to establish the value of the Model. The thesis finds that choice-based models of consulting empower client organisations to evaluate their management development in line with their own objectives and through means of their choosing. This process brings clients to the heart of the consulting exercise and increases their sense of ownership of the results of the organisational evaluation and management development.