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When organizations are faced with growth, downsizing or the need to respond to breakdowns in coordination or communication, often times, reorganization becomes a solution. Sometimes, reorganization can be extreme including the move from decentralization to centralization, to a matrix structure, or to self-directed teams. Other times, reorganization is just changing people’s roles and reporting relationships.
Too often, the structure change is seen as the “solution” to previously experienced breakdowns, and attention isn’t given to the culture. For instance, you can implement a team structure, train people in teamwork, and still have people operate autonomously without a sense of team.
There are two primary keys to an effective reorganization. First, make sure that the new structure has mapped out the “accountability linkages” between different functional areas. Second, ensure that mindset and habits of behavior change to reinforce new roles, relationships and expectations.
Beginning with a clear Picture of Success for business results and culture in the future, the new organizational structure is reviewed to ensure solid roles, relationships and “accountability linkages.”
Starting with both senior management and then working with middle management as teams, there is a clear understanding of the connection between business results, the new structure and the desired culture. Based on that understanding, new leadership “habits of behavior” in key areas of execution are clearly defined and measured to support reorganization.
Then we form appropriate senior and middle managers form cross-functional task forces to work out the operational systems and processes necessary to support the new structure. Both the changes to the operating process and the culture are tracked and monitored for effective implementation. Proactive Recovery Plans are developed to quickly surface and resolve breakdowns at the lowest level.
- The new organizational structure is implemented successfully ahead of schedule
- Based on our approach and partnership with leadership, morale improves even during a change effort
- The new structure and culture are linked to improved business results
- Leaders at all levels are identified for more effective succession planning
- A new level of trust is developed at all levels based on effective implementation and change leadership
- People that had difficulty responding to the new structure and culture are treated with respect and dignity regardless of the outcome