Balancing competing demands

Organization Design (OD) is both an art and a science of finding the right organizational system to deliver on what your customers demand, what your business needs, and what your employees want.

Know who you want to be

Too many times, the initial conversation with HR professionals about OD starts with the business show-and-telling hierarchies of how the team looks today and how they need to look tomorrow. Capacity and role clarity (or lack thereof) are usually the most common scapegoats. It's easy to draw boxes and lines, overlooking operating assumptions, missing key linkages with other teams, and ignoring a short list of surprisingly difficult questions:

  1. What are the symptoms and root cause suggesting organization structure needs to change? Is structure really the right lever?

  2. Is there a clearly understood operating model today? (is the customer in it?) What does the target operating model need to reflect?

  3. What is the team's value stream? How is it enabling enterprise strategy?

  4. What are the capabilities required to deliver against those values? 

  5. What are the work requirements enabling value delivery?

  6. Is there work that should be moving (in, out, automation) to improve efficiency, lift morale, or enhance the customer experience?

Think strategically. Take time to clarify who you need to be and what you need to deliver before trying to resolve gaps through structure, which may not even be the best enabling tool for your journey.


Galbraith's Star Model™

Jay Galbraith developed the "Star Model™" framework for analyzing organizations in the 1960s. The Star Model™ is the foundation on which a company bases its design choices. The framework consists of a series of design policies that are controllable by management and can influence employee behavior. The policies are the tools with which management must become skilled in order to shape the decisions and behaviors of their organizations effectively.


Consistent and repeatable processes

Since 2008, I've been refining a comprehensive work breakdown structure accounting for the integration among all HR and supporting corporate functions to effectively enable organizational (structural) change. 

Organization Design Experience
  • Fortune 40 omni-channel retailer

    • Digital Merchandising​

    • Enterprise Architecture (IT)

    • Pricing, Promotions, & Credit

    • Targeted Marketing

    • Omnichannel (Product Management) Resolutions

    • eCommerce Operations

    • Store Operations

    • Digital Product Management Personalization, Search, Navigation, Search Engine Optimization

    • Core Merchandising

  • Financial services/ insurance​

    • Information Technology​

  • Utilities​

    • Field Management​