Very few organizational consultants working in the western world would pooh pooh the importance of having an OD change plan. The plan can be a grandiose master plan, or a MS project plan, or at least an excel sheet, which spells out the deliverables, roles and responsibilities and due dates.
The importance and advantages of planning appear obvious and let’s be honest, planning does appear to have a lot of value which one expects to be universally acknowledged. This is not the case.
There are folks who have taught me about perceptions that plans are “delusional control tools” of those who believe they control the environment.
There are folks who have taught me about the perceptions that plans are “traps” that ensnare creativity.
There are folks who have taught me about the perceptions that ingenuity drives change, and plans stifle ingenuity.
There are folks who have taught me about the perceptions that plans are more about control than about doing what needs to be done.
A client in Egypt taught me an Arabic saying “isal el rafik kabl el tariq”-ask with whom, not about the road to be taken.
And many many folks I work with see in planning an obsession.
Since I myself am much disciplined and work to plan, these were hard lessons for me to learn.
When I did learn them, the quality of cooperation I got in India, Taiwan, Israel, Thailand and Indonesia increased tenfold.
When working with Germans, Americans, Brits and Dutch on one hand, and cultures which value planning to a lesser extent, I was able to work on what are the assumptions that people have about planning, with very good results.