What is Organisation Design

What is Organisation Design?

Organisation Design is a foundational skill for all HR professionals as well as managers. Yet from my experience, it is relegated to very few specialists, who often don’t even make it to the high ranks of the HR profession. I’ve already mentioned in a previous post how essential is the setting up of Operating Governance as a critical component for Agile Transformation. I have also discussed previously the fact that drawing an Organisation Chart is not the main aim of Organisation Design. I’ve also recently reviewed the Guide on Organisation Design by Naomi Stanford, a great book to start understanding what Organisation Design is at a very practical level. With this post I want to bring us one step further: as we redefine the role of HR to become The Architects of Work, something that Dave Ulrich again suggested at the recent HR Congress in Nice, we need to make sure we master the ins and outs of Organisation Design, which is why I’ve decided to concentrate on this topic, amongst others, on this blog. And what’s best than starting with a good definition of what Organisation Design is? Defining Organisation …

Followership and Leadership

Management is often assumed to be the story of Leader and Followers.But truly understanding Followership is critical to understand how organisations work. We are so ingrained in the idea that Leadership is critical, that we tend to forget that a Leader alone won’t be able to achieve much. The role of Leadership is overrated in organisations. The role of Followership is instead underrated. With this article, I want to shed some light on this conundrum and offer some personal perspectives on how to be able to improve on both fronts. The idea of this post came by reading the book Yes to the Mess by Frank J. Barrett that I have recently reviewed.  A leader is only as good as his or her followers. Doug Williamson Defining Followership It is the ability to take direction well, to get in line behind a program, to be part of a team and to deliver on what is expected of you.  John S. McCallum, Followership, the other side of Leadership The concept of Followership dates back down to the first studies on Leadership, but it is only in …

Life Events and Employee Experience

Life Events and Employee Experience

Life Events are an often forgotten element in Employee Experience design. As we engage in the design of the Employee Journeys that are at the basis of Employee Experience, we need to identify what really are the Moment that Matters. We have already discussed this definitely pivotal step in EX mapping. We will then end up with a map of all the Moments of Truth that matter most for our organisation. If we have designed our Personas correctly, we will have the appropriate diversity and variety. However, at this stage, we need to focus and we should narrow down the number of these moments to something that is of a manageable size. Several companies that have practised with EX implementation, have noticed however that a distinctive portion of these Moments of Truth is valued differently by the employee depending on the situation. My Goal Setting meeting is an important moment, but probably it will be worth more if it’s the first time I do it with my new manager. There’s however another layer of complexity, …

Organise without managers: is it possible at scale?

Organise without managers: is it possible at scale?

Organise without managers. A dream that many seem to nurture. A few months ago, I already wrote a post with what I thought was a thought-provoking title: do we still need managers? The answer I tried to give back then was that we certainly need proper management, but this does not automatically equate to keep the old hierarchy of managers. The debate about organising without managers is not new, is getting more and more inputs. But one of the critical questions has always been, is it possible to scale a manager-less organisation? The issue arises because most of the cases that emerge about companies without managers are often related to small companies or start-ups: Buffer, Morning Star Farms, Valve Software. Can manager-less models scale? Joost Minnaar, from Corporate Rebels, has published a long but fascinating post on the topic, analysing how large organisations can survive (or rather succeed) without multiple layers of middle management. This study is part of his PhD study, so it is still work in progress, but the article is very detailed and well supported with research and information. He has looked …

Corporate Rebels: driving disrupting culture change

Yesterday I joined the Corporate Rebel event in Milan, organized by Primate. The story of Pim and Joost, the two founders of this “movement” is interesting: “Back in January 2016, we quit our corporate jobs. Like most people, we worked in outdated workplaces characterized by inertia, bureaucracy and a lack of motivation. We simply couldn’t accept that the world of work – for far too many – is a place full of misery and despair.” A feeling shared by too many, considering the data that they have been using as the basis of their work: Gallup’s ‘State of the Global Workplace’ from 2017. If only 15% of people at work is genuinely engaged, what are the others thinking? Their motto “to make work more fun” actually hides something more than just fun. They compiled a “Bucket List” of engaging workplaces to visit and thinker to interview. And went on a road trip around the world to discover what’s making these places unique. Without a background in management or HR, they have been able to bring an “outside-in” perspective on observing the world of …