How to achieve the best organisational design – In a nutshell

Published on 3rd February 2014

How to achieve the best organisational design , In a nutshell – expert advice from Chris Lorimer at Lorimer Consulting

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There is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous to conduct, or more uncertain in its success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things — Niccolo Machiavelli

Before you embark upon a change in your organizational structure, ask yourself these two questions:
First, will the new organizational design benefit the customer, making it easier for them to do business with you?
And secondly, will the new structure enable your staff to work effectively, collaboratively and to the benefit the overall business aims?
Unless you are sure these questions can be answered in the positive you might want to reconsider.

If you decide to go ahead, to achieve the best design use the following 5 point plan to ensure success:
Aim. Be clear of the rationale — whether it’s to achieve cost savings, better alignment with the marketplace or to accommodate new products and services. Regardless, the change should be an opportunity to improve customer relationships and to ensure your staff have the opportunity to maximize their contribution.

Business Processes. Ensure your design supports the key business processes, avoiding the possibility of creating unnecessary hand-offs, delays or duplication. Remember also to allow room for those informal interactions that can be crucial in knitting together the organizational culture.
Spans of control. Be wary of creating a structure where leaders have too many people reporting into them. Too many reports will overload your leaders and allow insufficient support for your staff.

Roles and responsibilities. Make this the opportunity to ensure your staff have absolute clarity of what is expected of them through a clear job description and objectives.

Communication. This is a stressful time for everyone so the best leaders communicate, communicate and communicate again, regularly restating the rationale and emphasizing the progress being made.
Finally, reorganizations often take several months to bed in, so heed the words of Machiavelli and be patient when assessing the success of the new design.

Chris Lorimer
Lorimer Consulting
[email protected]
07774 827305


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