PSY FPX 6730 Assessment 5 Case Study: Implementation
Phillip April 15, 2024 No Comments

PSY FPX 6730 Assessment 5 Case Study: Implementation

PSY FPX 6730 Assessment 5 Case Study: Implementation

Name

Capella University

PSY FPX 6730 Consultation Psychology

Prof. Name

Date

Abstract

This assessment will focus on the implementation part of the case study. Within this assessment will be the selection of two relevant group-level interventions designed to improve performance. Next, an implementation plan for the group-level interventions will be outlined along with goals, and its process. Further into the implementation plan will also outline an evaluation plan for the group-level interventions. Lastly, an analysis of the future development of my consultant prowess moving towards the future.

Implementation

The Implementation Process

Group-Level Intervention Selection

To improve performance during this case study, two distinct approaches will be chosen to aid in the rectifying of issues such as client resistance, and potential performance issues. As the goal of a leadership development process is in sight, there are undoubtedly hurdles in place for the consultant considering the size of the organization and the number of people involved. Reminding the reader of the scope of the organization, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is the biggest transportation organization in North America and the second largest in the world. The organization is comprised of six individual agencies plus its headquarters with approximately 70,000 employees. Around 93% of these employees are operational while the remaining 7% is administrative. Leadership consists of around 4000 people ranging from supervisors, all the way to agency chiefs.

This case study is a large project with a plethora of people involved across all the MTA’s individual agencies. Each set of leaders from these agencies all have their concerns and opinions about what a leadership development project should look like. With that said, it is fitting to integrate group-level interventions into the planning to help manage those who resist the current path and to help align these groups as best as possible. This assessment will observe two whole-system processes that are best fits for working through the hurdles the consultant is facing with a client as large and vast as the MTA.

World Café Intervention Method

The World Café (TWC), Ropes et al. (2020, p. 303) explain TWC as “a type of large-scale organizational development intervention originally designed as a forum for open and creative discussion – the defining characteristic of it is the way communication is based on conversations structured as dialogue.” Developed by Juanita Brown, she believed that “by creating a cafe like environment, people would naturally engage with one another, share and connect ideas, and generate new thinking” (Gill et al. 2016, p. 101). The consultant sees TWC as an opportunity to connect high-level leaders from across the organization to share thoughts and ideas on how each agency initiates its leadership development within its own spaces.

It is worth reminding that each agency has its leadership hierarchy and method to develop emerging leaders and enhance the skills of existing ones. However, the idea of a universal leadership development apparatus has been met with moderate levels of resistance from the different sets of leaders. With that said, Ropes et al. (2020, p. 304) explain how “according to most available publications, TWC focuses on one or more of the following areas:”

PSY FPX 6730 Assessment 5 Case Study: Implementation

  • “Description of its implementation in various settings” (Ropes et al., 2020, p. 304).
  • “Articulating best practice and lessons learned from the implementation of TWC” (Ropes et al., 2020, p. 304).
  • “Detailing the utilization of TWC to address specific goals such as leadership development or organizational change” (Ropes et al., 2020, p. 304).
  • “Showcasing the use of TWC and addressing inequalities and service provision” (Ropes et al., 2020, p. 304).

I believe this intervention would assist greatly in bringing leaders from across the MTA together to have widespread idea-sharing conversations. Referencing the size of the MTA and its multiple agencies, the consultant would introduce TWC by beginning a dialogue in which “the person (the consultant) hosting the conversation creates A hospitable space for the group to address a question that matters to them” (Gill et al. 2016, p. 101). By utilizing this method in manageable-sized groups, it gives opportunities for agency chiefs to trade information and build trust with the consultant.

Rapid Results Intervention Method

The next intervention method of interest for this case study is the Rapid Results implementation. Schaffer and Stearn (2015, p. 687) describe Rapid Results as an approach “which requires managers and frontline staff to work in small teams to accomplish major steps up in the performance within very tight deadlines.” The reading continues to explain that “while this approach consistently yields significant performance gains, it also generates two kinds of management development that are essential to achieving the transformation just described” (Schaffer & Stearn, 2015, p. 687). Below are the two forms of management development that rapid response manifests in practice as discussed in the reading:

PSY FPX 6730 Assessment 5 Case Study: Implementation

  1. “Team members learn a wide variety of skills needed to achieve their goals quickly – they learn to spontaneously form effective collaborations, sometimes formal and sometimes informal” (Schaffer & Stearn, 2015, p. 687). Concerning the case study, MTA leaders from across agencies can hold meetings to trade information and learn to work together as it will be a mandate for the consultation to be successful.
  2. “Team members gain new confidence that enables personal and organizational transformation — as they push through to new levels of performance, they discovered that dramatically better performance can be realized, not by stress and strain, but by creative innovation” (Schaffer & Stearn, 2015, p. 687).

The Rapid Response intervention method would work well with the management structures within each agency when it comes to quickly working through hurdles once the leadership development program has been established. There will undoubtedly be issues once the consultant moves on, however, the client having the power to solve problems and become more efficient while doing so is a plus across the board.

Client Resistance Strategies

As the case study progresses, there will be periods of resistance considering the size of the MTA and its management base as we move towards developing a more universal leadership development program. This section will lay out three strategies for combating resistance from within.

  • In the role of the consultant, it is their responsibility to identify signs of resistance. The consultant expects this resistance from the managerial ranks of the MTA during this project considering the size of the organization. Block (2011, p. 151) discusses three steps for handling resistance: i. “Identify in your own mind what form the resistance is taking. The skill is to pick up the cues from the manager and then describe to yourself what you see happening” (Block, 2011, p. 151). ii. “State, in a neutral, unpunishing way, the form the resistance is taking. This is called “naming the resistance.” The skill is to find the neutral language” (Block, 2011, p. 151). iii. “Be quiet. Let the line manager respond to your statement about the resistance” (Block, 2011, p. 151).

PSY FPX 6730 Assessment 5 Case Study: Implementation

  • Rafferty and Jimmieson (2017, p. 251) state that “when employees experience changes to key aspects of their work environment such as values, strategy and structure, they will experience some discomfort due to the degree of adaptation required – this may then translate into resistance to change in the form of negative actions or intentions to as people negatively react to this discomfort.” I am suggesting that the agency heads hold meetings in a TWC format with their frontline leaders along with the consultant with a unified message for what the leadership development program means for the MTA and how it will benefit the entire organization. I would emphasize that all the participants have a part to play in this endeavor and it is a great opportunity to network with agency leaders on all levels.
  • Participants in this project will resist during the opening stages of the case study, even after explaining that this leadership development project is important and time-sensitive. Considering the scope of the project, when met with resistance for some of the tangibles, tasks can be reshaped into “short-term” projects that involved the resistors working towards a goal that both “produce both bottom line results and personal and organizational development outcomes” (Schaffer & Stearn, 2015, p. 689). This method should furnish a sense of achievement among the detractors and build more trust in the leadership development plan.

Implementation Plan

To introduce the group-level intervention plans, the case study requires an implementation plan for these interventions to operate through. The goals for these group-level interventions are designed to encourage collaboration between agency leadership as it unifies under the umbrella of the project, manages, and ultimately eliminates resistance, and encourages higher levels of performance. Below are some of the introductory ways these group-level interventions will be implemented by the consultant:

  • The World Café method will be initiated by the consultant to first meet with MTA agency chiefs to discuss the implementation of the process. Rallying these individuals to discuss best practices and expectations for subordinate leaders and listen for high-level resistors should happen on a bi-weekly basis. I also believe there should be an executive presence in attendance at the meeting possibly every other gathering. This would go far in showing that the highest levels of the MTA are invested in the project’s success.
  • The Rapid Response method should be implemented on lower leadership levels to help negate resistance and resistors. I believe this method also builds engagement from a grass-roots level as it allows agency leaders of the same tier to collaborate and increase performance while working through specific project tasks. The consultant should also meet with these frontline leaders on a every week to evaluate project completion and to feel the collaborative fabric between leaders.

Evaluation Plan

The chosen evaluation plan for the group-level interventions in the case study is the Kirkpatrick Model. Explained by Kirkpatrick Partners (2023), the Kirkpatrick Model “is the standard for leveraging and validating talent investments – the model applies to all programs; popular topics for the Kirkpatrick program evaluation plans include onboarding, product and program launches, leadership development, diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), safety, security, and succession planning.” The Kirkpatrick Model is comprised of four levels of evaluation:

  1. “Level 1: Reaction – The degree to which participants find the training favorable, engaging, and relevant to their jobs” (Kirkpatrick Partners, 2023).
  2. “Level 2: Learning – the degree to which participants acquire the intended knowledge, skills, attitude, confidence, and commitment based on their participation in the training” (Kirkpatrick Partners, 2023).
  3. “Level 3: Behavior – The degree to which participants apply what they learned during training when they are back on the job” (Kirkpatrick Partners, 2023).
  4. “Level 4: Results – The degree to which targeted outcomes occur as a result of the training and the support and accountability package” (Kirkpatrick Partners, 2023).

PSY FPX 6730 Assessment 5 Case Study: Implementation

Regarding some of the weaknesses of the Kirkpatrick evaluation method, there are a few critiques of the program that should be noted. In an article by Reio et al. (2017, p. 37), “in a 30-year review or articles evaluating the model, three major problematic assumptions were identified.” Below is a list of the three critiques of the Kirkpatrick Model:

  1. “The first assumption is that the levels are arranged in ascending order and the model is hierarchical in nature. Therefore, the higher levels are more valuable and important than the lower ones” (Reio et al, 2017, p. 37).
  2. “The second assumption is that the four levels of evaluation are causally linked. Based on this assumption, many researchers and HRD professionals presume that positive reactions are a prerequisite for learning to occur” (Reio et al, 2017, p. 37).
  3. “The third assumption is that the four levels are positively intercorrelated. If these two assumptions were true (the second and third assumptions) it would be sufficient just to evaluate whether employees have positive reactions (Level 1) to the training program, from which it could be assumed they learned from the training, they ultimately would improve their job performance, and positively contribute to organizational results” (Reio et al, 2017, p. 37).

PSY FPX 6730 Assessment 5 Case Study: Implementation

Speaking to some strengths of the Kirkpatrick model, despite critiques, it is still used and Alsalamah and Callinan (2022, p. 39) tell us that “many researchers and practitioners have found it very useful, and it is the most commonly used model in organizations.” The longevity of the Kirkpatrick model shows in other models that use its foundations to create their frameworks. The expected evaluation outcome based on the implementation of the Kirkpatrick Model is to successfully make it to the fourth level to furnish positive results. Working through the evaluation and coming to a complete leadership development program is the measure of success the consultant is striving for.

This does not mean that there will not be slight issues even at the consult’s conclusion. I propose discussing the evaluation plan throughout each step in scheduled meetings with MTA leadership to describe in detail where the evaluation is experiencing issues and how we should address and rectify them before moving to the next stage. I would emphasize that steps three and four of the Kirkpatrick model can be difficult but are necessary trials that will require a strengthened effort from all involved parties across each agency.

Conclusion

This case study has been challenging with all its elements, but I believe this project is achievable for a consultant. By utilizing the group intervention plans that were selected, I think these methods will cover the large number of project participants that will be involved in this endeavor.

I believe that while some may not want to subscribe to this level of change, ultimately the chosen methods will change minds and foster in a new era of engagement that will benefit not just the MTA with a new leadership development program, but frontline leadership across all agencies will feel a rejuvenation thorough new goals and performance measurements. The evaluation method will be solid, and the consultant will be met with support both from above and grass-roots grown from working with low-level leaders. I see success in the future of this case study and of the consultant (myself) as I grow and develop my craft through trial, error, resistance, adjustments, and small successes in stages.

References

Alsalamah, A., & Callinan, C. (2022). The Kirkpatrick model for training evaluation: bibliometric analysis after 60 years (1959–2020). Industrial and Commercial Training, 54(1), 36-63. https://doi.org/10.1108/ICT-12-2020-0115

Block, P. (2011). Flawless consulting: A guide to getting your expertise used. Center for Creative Leadership. https://ebookcentral-proquestcom.library.capella.edu/lib/capella/reader.action?docID

=661497&ppg=179

Gill, L., Ramsey, P., Leberman, S., & Atkins, S. (2016). Using World Café to Enhance Relationship-building for the Purpose of Developing Trust in Emotional Intelligence Training Environments: EJBRM. Electronic Journal of Business Research Methods, 14(2), 98-110. http://library.capella.edu/login?qurl=https%3A%2F %2Fwww.proquest.com%2Fscholarly-journals%2Fusing-world-caf%C3%A9-enhancerelationship-building%2Fdocview%2F1860724887%2Fse-2

Kirkpatrick Partners. (2023). What is the Kirkpatrick Model. https://kirkpatrickpartners.com/thekirkpatrick-model/

PSY FPX 6730 Assessment 5 Case Study: Implementation

Rafferty, A. E., & Jimmieson, N. L. (2017). Subjective Perceptions of Organizational Change and Employee Resistance to Change: Direct and Mediated Relationships with Employee Well-being. British Journal of Management, 28(2), 248–264. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-8551.12200

Reio, T. G., Rocco, T. S., Smith, D. H., & Chang, E. (2017). A Critique of Kirkpatrick’s Evaluation Model. New Horizons in Adult Education & Human Resource Development, 29(2), 35–53. https://doi.org/10.1002/nha3.20178

Ropes, D., Han, v. K., & Douven, G. (2020). Learning in The World Café: an empirical evaluation. Journal of Workplace Learning, 32(4), 303-316. https://doi.org/10.1108/JWL-10-2019-0126

Schaffer, R.H., & Stearn, J.M., (2015). The rapid results package: Better performance/stronger managers. Business Horizons. 58(6), 687-695. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bushor.2015.07.006