Dr. Jim Laub developed the OLA to assess organizational health through an intensive research project that produced a comprehensive model of servant leadership applied to organizational life.

The constructs for this model were established through a Delphi Survey process utilizing a panel of 14 experts in the field of servant leadership. These experts included Jim Kouzes from Learning Systems, Inc./The Tom Peters Group and Larry Spears from the Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership along with twelve others who had published or taught at the University level on the subject of servant leadership. Through a 3-part Delphi process these experts came to consensus on the characteristics of the servant-minded organization, which were then clustered into the current Six Key Areas along with their 18 descriptors.
These constructs were then used to write the 60 items that make up the OLA assessment. The instrument was designed to be taken by people from all levels within the organization including Top Leaders, Managers and Workforce. This provided the possibility of viewing the differing perceptions within the same organization providing the critical concept of the degree of Perception Match.
The OLA was originally field tested with 41 different organizations involving 823 people. This field test, along with the ongoing research being conducted using the OLA, has provided for strong psychometric properties of validity and reliability. It is an instrument that can be trusted to measure the organizations perceptions of organizational health within a conceptual framework of servant leadership.
In addition to the 60 OLA items, the OLA also contains a six-item Job Satisfaction Scale. This scale provides a look at the different levels of job satisfaction being experienced by the workforce, the managers and the top leaders of the organization.
The OLA has been utilized in several doctoral dissertations and Masters theses providing for a strong Research base for the instrument. In addition to research, it is also being used for the diagnosis of organizational health, assisting companies in their quest for greater success in fulfilling their mission.
Development of the Organizational Leadership Assessment (OLA) Instrument
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This 30-page article documents the development of the OLA instrument by Dr. Jim Laub including the three part Delphi survey process, which provided the constructs for the instrument, along with a desciption of the field test of the instrument with over 800 participants.

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