Coordinate through systems rather than people

logo "ABB"This article on “How ABB has used shared systems to integrate it’s various business units” illustrates a simple point about coordination within complex businesses.

In a  matrix organization structure a lot of the complexity is caused by multiple reporting lines and the fact that people can be caught between multiple bosses and competing priorities – it is often the relationships and people dynamics that magnify the complexity.

In many areas we can get the benefits of coordination through sharing information, work-flows and common systems – supply chain would be a good example, without necessarily having a formal matrix structure.

We can help you choose the simplest structure that meets your objectives and develop the skills to make that structure work.  Find out more here

Source: “ABB’s Relays Business: Building and Managing a Global Matrix” by Christopher A. Bartlett, Harvard Business School. Publication Date: July 12, 1993.

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