Mature organizations adopt a holistic approach to organization design by focusing on the entire interconnected system. This means aligning strategy with work processes. Strategy defines what will provide a competitive advantage for the organization; Organization Design/Alignment is aligning strategy, structure, work processes, information, culture, people, rewards, and metrics; Implementation is choosing where to utilize resources, mobilizing people to accomplish the strategy, and how to manage change and communicate it.
Implementing a new organization design requires the ability to effectively manage change considering the new design is apt to change strategy, structure, goals and objectives, roles and responsibilities, work processes, information, culture, people, rewards, and metrics. In order to effectively manage the changes initiated by a new organization design, leadership must help the members of the organization navigate the transition between the old organizational structure and the new organizational structure.
To effectively manage the transition between the old organizational structure and the new organizational structure the following must be considered:
- Tools and resources—good documentation, job aids, clear expectations, access to technology or information needed to behave in the new world of work
- Preparing people for change— being clear on how the changes will personally impact the employees, and being prepared to respond to the emotional reactions of employees to the planned changes
- Executing the new design—communicating the changes, explaining how the changes affect all functions, working through problem spots, aligning the organization around the new vision, and reinforcing desirable behavior.
Implementation work is just as important as the design work. Creating a new organizational structure, for example, often includes redesigning work processes and redefining roles and responsibilities. We try very hard to help our clients understand that their jobs do not end with the final design. Rather, they need to put as much energy and effort into implementing the new structure as they did in designing it.
Just as the work of an architect does not end with the construction blueprints (masons, framers, roofers, plumbers, electricians, window installers, drywall finishers, interior designers need to understand the design of the architect so that the plan articulated by the blueprints can be properly implemented), organization design does not end with the design work but continues with implementation.
Finish what you start!