Aligning Your Company Structure with Your Personal Goals

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Many people find themselves stuck in a corporate structure that doesn’t fit their lifestyle. You may even have a situation where you are forced to take a job that you dislike in order to make ends meet. 

But you can avoid this problem by determining your own personal goals and putting your company structure into perspective.

Defining an Organizational Structure

When it comes to your life and business, you’ll want to find a way to define an organizational structure that supports your goals. 

Choosing the right structure isn’t easy, and it can be tough to know what to do. The best way to figure out which type is the best fit for you is to assess the structure of your current organization.

An organizational chart will give you a good idea of how your group is structured. A chart can also show you the elements of an organization and how they work together. For instance, it can help you determine which areas are critical to your future strategy.

Similarly, an organizational chart will tell you which members of your team are in charge of which functions. It can also help you identify overlaps with external resources. As your business grows and changes, your structure may also change.

If you have paid staff, you might need a more formal structure. You should also have more people in charge of more responsibilities. Keeping to a structure that you haven’t adjusted to in years isn’t necessarily the best approach.

There are seven types of organizational structures. Each one has its pros and cons. But the most important thing to remember is that choosing the right structure for your business is important because that’s what keeps the proverbial bread on our tables and keeps our investors satisfied.

The right structure is the guiding force behind your company’s growth and success. So, it’s best to think about it early. While you’re at it, consider the size and scope of your business, as well as your strategic objectives and business life cycle.

While an organizational chart won’t do all the work for you, it can still be a useful tool. Consider preparing a project charter to outline the key stakeholders and their responsibilities.

Hierarchical Structure

Choosing the right structure is one of the most important decisions a business owner makes. A good hierarchy is a hallmark of a thriving organization.

The most obvious advantage of a hierarchical structure is the ability to centralize authority. This helps in areas like employee retention and overall productivity. Creating a hierarchical structure also allows for the creation of a multi-level reporting structure. For example, a department head can be placed in charge of a team of specialized personnel.

Hierarchical structures can be narrow or wide. The former is the best choice for a small business, while the latter may be appropriate for larger companies with more specialized operations. 

The decision will depend on your business model and goals. Whether or not you choose a hierarchy, you’ll still need to take into account the needs of your staff.

Functional Structure

When it comes to running a successful business, an organizational structure is essential. A proper structure helps align employees with company goals and improves workflow. 

It can also provide a clear picture of the workings of your business. In addition, it can help identify areas of need for external support.

Organizational structures come in a variety of shapes and sizes. The type of structure that works best for you depends on several factors. For example, the size of your team, your products, and the type of company you run.

A functional structure is used by many companies to organize their operations. It divides the organization into departments or divisions that are specialized in specific areas such as finance, marketing, production, and human resources. 

Each department has its own leader that reports directly to the company’s top executive. This type of organizational structure offers a clear chain of command and provides better coordination and collaboration among the departments. 

It is a good choice for companies that want to focus on efficiency and optimization of operations. 

The functional organization structure also encourages specialization, which helps ensure that every department has qualified staff with in-depth knowledge and expertise in their respective areas. This makes it easier to identify and delegate tasks, ensure quality control, and complete projects quickly. It also makes it easier for departments to communicate with each other, exchange information, and share resources. 

The main disadvantage of a functional structure is that it can be inflexible when responding to changes in the marketplace or customer needs. 

Decision-making processes may be slow because they need to go through different levels of management. Functional structures are not as conducive to innovation as they may lack the collaboration and communication needed to generate new ideas. 

Functional organizational structures divide employees into departments based on the function or services they perform. This creates efficiencies, as people with similar functions are grouped together. Also, they are easier to change than other structures.

While functional structures are ideal for small or medium-sized businesses, they can be inefficient for larger firms. Many companies abandon them when they grow. Alternatively, a flat or mechanistic structure can be useful for a growing firm.

Whether you decide to use a divisional or functional structure, it’s important to know how each type affects your organization. Each one offers unique advantages and disadvantages.

The functional structure is ideal for smaller firms, as it focuses on specialized tasks. However, it’s often slow to implement changes. As a result, it can be inefficient for organizations with diverse products or target markets.

Divisional Structure

Divisional structures are a great way to give your company a competitive edge. By breaking the organization into smaller, self-contained units, you can focus on specific products or services. 

Each division can also try to develop a new offering, which can help you to gain a foothold in the market. Having separate divisions can also be a good way to mitigate risk.

While there are a number of ways to structure an organization, one of the most efficient is the functional or multidivisional structure. This design allows the firm to better serve customers and to act quickly. 

It also helps to avoid the duplication of resources that can happen when one department does too many things. For example, a marketing unit within a division might be able to take care of all aspects of the advertising campaign. A central office is charged with overseeing the other divisions.

Using a matrix or flat structure can be a great way to increase efficiency while maintaining an emphasis on teamwork. 

Although it can be quite costly to implement, it can also encourage productivity. Matrix structures also allow employees to communicate more effectively. However, they may leave a few gaps between the various departments.

Another way to divide your company is to make it geographically based. This is the best approach for companies that need to be near their customers. This kind of structure is a great way to bring together a wide variety of business expertise and knowledge. 

It allows each division to make decisions from a wide array of different perspectives. Lastly, it can provide an opportunity for your firm to hone in on its niche while still catering to a broader customer base.

Reorganizations Hurt Employee Morale

Company reorganizations destroy employee morale. These events can happen for a number of reasons, including the creation of new positions, a restructuring of responsibilities, or a change of job titles. 

Regardless of the cause, reorganizations tend to leave employees feeling uncertain, apprehensive, and uneasy.

Changes in workplaces can occur abruptly or over a period of time. In addition, employees may be exposed to new roles, information systems, or processes that impact their work. If there is not an organized plan to manage these changes, they can be disruptive.

Workers have been subjected to major changes in their workplaces over the past two years. Many have switched careers, experienced layoffs, or left for caregiving duties. However, some have been able to retain their jobs and maintain good morale. Others have not had the same experience.

Good leaders can help ease the stress. They can also help make good hires and develop leadership in the organization. Those who experience reorganizations or workplace stress should seek outside resources.

One common factor is fatigue. Those who have experienced workplace changes many times have difficulty accepting further change. 

Survivors can feel guilt or depression. Using empathy can help them understand their own feelings and those of others. Empathy can also help them anticipate people’s needs, and to understand how the organization’s personality and relationships affect them.

I'm Allison Dunn,

Your Business Executive Coach

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