Matrix Management

Paving the social paths – social media as a matrix management trend

Eight trends in matrix management #5 Paving the social paths

Social media has already transformed marketing and service delivery over the last few years. It cuts across traditional organizational boundaries of communication (the typical reason for introducing matrix management in the first place) and changes the nature of trust. Customers are now more likely to trust the opinions of other people like them than the messages put out by corporate marketing organizations.

We should expect social media in a matrix management set up to have some similar impacts on internal communication and hierarchies.

In terms of matrix organization design, we should expect to see the spontaneous growth of networks and communities to add context and relevance to communication and cooperation. In the social world, people choose who to ‘follow’, connect and pay attention to, irrespective of whether these connections cross traditional organizational and hierarchical boundaries. In this way, the use of social media should encourage the kind of behaviours that matrix management is designed to elicit.

We should expect this to change the nature of communication and hierarchy.

Social media, on its own, presents the opportunity to deliver many of the benefits that we are looking for in introducing a matrix organization structure.

It used to be hard to work out who were the experts in the organization on a specific topic and also hard to access them. Now we have an internal system where we can search on people’s profiles and quickly identify who is involved in which project or who has expertise in the specific area. We can reach out and send a message instantly. The old silos and barriers to communication disappear.

Social Media Manager, Telecommunications

When architects design the grounds of a building development, they face a choice. They can either put in paths where they think people will walk, or wait to see where people actually walk and then pave these areas. Architects use simulations of human behaviour to anticipate where people will actually walk as part of their designs.

In a socially connected world, where we choose who to follow and to pay attention to, technology enables the development and maintenance of these networks at low-cost. We should expect to see different patterns of connection develop within our organizations based on use of this technology.

One option, instead of trying to direct or anticipate these networks, is to wait and see what networks form and then structure around the network that people actually find useful in getting things done, to ‘pave the social paths’ that people really use to get things done.

At Global Integration, we expect that social media to encourage and embed the ‘matrix mindset’ – the set of behaviours and attitudes that encourage cooperation across the silos and make matrix management really work.

Why not….?

 

Paving the social paths – social media as a matrix management trend

Explore our training programs to see how we can help.

Virtual Teams Training Matrix Management Training Agile & Digital Training

Educate yourself further with a few more or our online insights:

25 years of experience learning with a range of world class clients

We work with a wide range of clients from global multinationals to recent start-ups. Our audiences span all levels, from CEOs to operational teams around the world.  Our tools and programs have been developed for diverse and demanding audiences.

View more of our clients
Two woman talking with a cup of coffee

Tailored training or off the shelf modules for your people development needs

We are deep content experts in remote & virtual teams, matrix management and agile & digital leadership. We are highly flexible in how we deliver our content and ideas. We can tailor content closely to your specific needs or deliver off the shelf bite sized modules based on our existing IP and 25 years of training experience.

For more about how we deliver our keynotes, workshops, live web seminars and online learning.

Discover our training solutions