Sensitivity training


The most commonly used Organizational Development intervention is sensitivity training. It is called laboratory training as it is conducted by creating an experimental laboratory situation in which employees are brought together, in groups, to interact in an unstructured environment. The members are encouraged to interact with new members and new individual behaviors.

The objectives of laboratory training are:

1. To help people understand themselves better.
2. To create better understanding of others.
3. To gain insight into the group process
4. To develop specific behavioral skills.

Some people never understand why they feel and act as they do and how the others feel about them. Some people are insensitive to the effects of their behavior upon others and their orders upon subordinates. Laboratory training helps such people to understand the impact of their behavior on others. Most of the people concentrate on what they are going to say rather than what the others are saying. This training develops the communication skills of the employers and develops them as good listeners. It also helps the participants to form into informal groups and teams and work more effectively.

Modus Operandi of Sensitivity Training

Sensitivity training provides face to face interaction. This training is carried out by largely unstructured groups without an agenda, leader and predetermined goals. The group is given complete freedom in developing their own devices, interactions and on-going process for interaction. Sometimes, the trainer introduces certain planned activities involving one or two professional trainers set in with each “T� group. The emphasis in this training is not upon learning specific facts but upon gaining understanding of feelings, gestures, attitudes and emotions, i.e. sensitivity to oneself and others.

Another type of group is encounter group. These groups involve unstructured small group interaction under stress in a situation that requires people to become sensitive to one another’s feelings in order to develop group activity. These groups seek to improve understanding of self and others, group process, culture and general behavior skills.

Laboratory training may include role playing, inter group competitive exercise, self-insight questionnaire, theory sessions with lectures, background readings, panel discussions and audio-visual aids in addition to ‘T’ groups.

Team Building

Most of the laboratory training takes place among the employees of the same department. These employees work together as a team. Team building is nothing but application of various techniques of sensitivity training to the actual work groups in various departments. These work groups consists of peers and a supervisor. Laboratory techniques are also applied to short-term work teams. The technique, like laboratory training, aims at improving inter-group relations. This technique is designed to improve ability of the employees to work together as teams.

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  • manalin jain

    Please tell me name of the some companies where sensitivity training is carried out and how?

  • birendra

    I am interested to know more about sensitivity training.

  • deepa

    Read dis article but was wondering whether it is actually implemented by the organisations or it is just theoretical.And if yes then which are the organisations.

  • mulugeta

    I find it very intresting it is of greate thing that people of similar concern share ideas and get remdy for problems

  • Venkat

    Very good. However, specific details can be given for understanding better.

  • Deepak

    can i know more about it??

    pls send me the detail at



    deepak malik



    The point which i like is given below, also i fall under this, am trying to correct it. Thanks for this input.

    Most of the people concentrate on what they are going to say rather than what the others are saying


  • Pradeep

    Excellent, intimate more about the training and how the same is carried out.


  • Ullhas Supatkar

    In India, “Indian Society for Applied behavioural science” commonly known as ISABS, conducts this programmen as “Basic Level Human Process Lab”

    The summer event is in Goa from 18th to 23 rd May and second week from 26th to 31st May.

    This is one of the most high impact experiential learning programme. One needs to go through it to understand it, just like swimming, you got to jump into the pool.

    You may check the web site at


    Ullhas Supatkar
    Head Learning and Development

    John Deere India, Pune

  • ramana murthy

    sensitivity training is a very good practical OD intervention tool for HRD.This laboratory is to understand self and others . we can examine our sensitivity to others’ comments .we can also understand ours selves better through this interaction process. one should free participate in these interactions to capture real learning about interaction analysis.

  • priyanka

    hi dear,
    i would like to know more abt sensitivity training. is this is also know as emotional training program. pls give some more information abt this as in which organization this system is being in use and how they operate it.

    with regards,

  • Arbscache

    May i ask some structured learning activities that i can use when conducting sensitivity training? it will be very helpful to me. thank you. email me at

  • Anshu Mishra

    i want to know about sensitivity training in Organizational development in case of merger and acquisition, pls give me some detailed information abt it.
    thank you. it will b a gr8 helh to me.
    my email id is