We live in changing environment. Our lives are constantly changing and of course business environment is changing. In "Next Generation CEO" concept, we discussed how business will be in near future. I think organizational structures support the business in the way of specific responsibilities. It is time for thinking about new types of organizations.
We totally need to set up the characteristics of new way of organizations. First of all, we should utilize the competency in any area of organization. We sometimes set up the job description however we should get an access to full scope of competency for an employee. So that you can guarantee strong involvement of employee in many area in organization. By doing that, you can give the authority based on capability rather than position levels. Another important point is being adaptable for alliances. Today's world is all about partnering up. However our organizations were not set in the way of adaptability for these major changes. Once you try to merge, you deal with lots of huge problems. So, we need to set our organizations by paying attention to alliances. I think the last thing is experimenting. We all can try the new ways such as flatarchies, holocracy to search for the new. We still think of boxes in organizational structure. Let's get rid of them, all this hierarchical stuff and create more competence pools.
After setting up characteristics, it is time for thinking about working models. In today's world, our corporate life is equivalent to number of meetings. We set the meeting, be in the meeting, create action items, then follow, then meet again, so on...Never ending story. If you create one solution out of action items, that means you become successful. I think that is waste of energy. Main working model should include network based structure, virtual organizations, self managed systems based on requirement, the most important one is self learning organizations. You have to create the system at first especially living one. Then you can assign employees to roles instead of well described positions. Position has job description but role has competency description. And if you have different capability in different areas like commercial, sales, project, then you can contribute to each. Organization needs to be set in self learning way. If not so, 10 years later, we discuss the new way again...
After working model, culture of the company plays key role. According to consultancy firms, there are lots of organizational types answering the question of how I manage my company. These are all theoratical stuff. If you are a global company and you survive for years, then you have a deep culture of managing business. Before choosing the fancy types of organizations, you should adapt it into your organizations and make the change step by step. Nowadays, holocracy is being discussed as new way. I propose to adjust some part of it towards digitalization requirements with including your culture. Instead of though reporting lines between managers, you describe a bubble which is living and can be changeable all the time, then you define the roles in bubble. You do not have to put any grade level defined for the position anymore. You just describe the competency required. It can be virtual including different capabilities such as sales, project, supply chain, strategy, communications. If you want more strict bubble then you create it as Sales bubble. After defining the roles, you assign employees for the roles and utilize them for other roles as well. That workload in total of an employee will determine all the benefits for the person already.
Main point is the following: Digitalization changes and will change everything like the way we do business. So, we need to get ready with our organizational structures. Using the modern and fancy one is not enough itself. You have to brainstorm within your top management and more flexible and self learning types needs to be chosen covering your culture. Once market or customers change, then you can adapt it real quick. Let's not forget the famous saying: The neglected leadership role is the designer of the ship.