Organisation Design is one of the key disciplines where HR should excel at. I truly believe it is also one of the most complexes, and often not looked after the way it should. In this area, you will find posts that treat about Organisation Design from, multiple angles, as I try to give my perspective (or report other’s points of views) on this Topic.

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 …

Book Review: An Everyone Culture by Robert Kegan and Lisa Laskow Lahey

Book Review: An Everyone Culture by Robert Kegan and Lisa Laskow Lahey

An Everyone Culture is another eye-opening book that focuses on how organisations should be organised to provide real meaning for their employees. Its subtitle, Becoming a Deliberately Developmental Organization, immediately looks at the solution that the two authors, Robert Kegan and Lisa Laskow Lahey, both faculty at Harvard University, are suggesting. I must admit that the book is not the usual business book. There’s much research behind it, both in the field (with a few case studies that are used across the book), but above all a constant reference on psychological research.  The book starts with a simple observation. Everyday… …most people are spending time and energy covering up their weaknesses, managing other people’s impressions of them, showing themselves to their best advantage, playing politics, hiding their inadequacies, hiding their uncertainties, hiding their limitations. Hiding. Robert Kegan and Lisa L. Lahey, An Everyone Culture, page 1. It’s from this observation that the research of this book starts. research shows that the single biggest cause of work burnout is not work overload, but working too long without experiencing your own personal …

Book Review: Yes to the Mess by Frank J. Barrett

Book Review: Yes to the Mess by Frank J. Barrett

Yes to the Mess: Surprising Leadership Lessons from Jazz is a powerful book that drives its lessons from the continuous parallel between Jazz music, and specifically from how Jazz Bands operate, and the world of Management and Leadership. After attending the Herbie Hancock concert in Milan, I wrote a post on the relationship between Jazz and Leadership. I did some research on the web, and that’s how I found this book. Written by Frank J. Barrett, a professor of Management at the Naval Postgraduate School, who was also a Jazz Pianist, the book made it immediately to my reading list. I thought that reading this post deserves a bit of a soundtrack. Kind of Blue is analysed deeply in the book, so why not listening while you read this? The book is primarily focused on jazz improvisation. But also about the leadership skills needed to understand and facilitate the innovation process. It starts by considering the fact that Jazz bands are organisations designed for innovation, and that its design elements can be applied to other organizations that seek …

Book Cover Guide to Organisation Design by Naomi Stanford

Book Review: Guide to Organisation Design by Naomi Stanford

The Economist Guide to Organisation Design by Naomi Stanford is a very well written and documented handbook on Organisation Design. Its subtitle Creating high-performing and adaptable enterprises immediately hints at the focus the author gives to the book, which is not just a list of methods and tools, but rather gives direction on a sound methodology to design organisations. I cannot compare this second edition with the previous ones, but it is evident that there is an effort to have a contemporary view on the topic of organisational design, including most recent trends and ideas. This Guide is not meant to give all the tools that are needed for a practitioner to be able to actually perform an entire OIrg Design project but gives a very sound idea of the sequence of event. It turns to be the perfect tool to be used with managers especially before starting a change journey. As well as it is a very good tool for all those HR professionals that never had the chance to have formal training in …