This concept and visual was taken from my new book, The Future of Work: Attract New Talent, Build Better Leaders, and Create a Competitive Organization.
A few weeks ago I introduced the concept of The 14 Principles of the Future Organization which outlines the crucial characteristics that organizations must have in order to succeed in the new business landscape that we are seeing emerge. For quite a while now I have been writing about and exploring how employees, managers, and organizations are evolving. To specifically show how organizations are evolving from past to future I wanted to create an image that depicts the “Evolution of the Organization.” This follows the same theme as: The Evolution of the Employee and The Evolution of the Manager
This is part 1 of the image:
Jeff Bezos has the “two pizza rule,” meaning that any team should be able to be fed by just two pizzas; if not, then the team is too large. We are seeing a big shift away from large structured centrally located teams to smaller more globally distributed teams which are held together by technology. As long as team members can access to the internet it doesn’t matter where they are located.
I may sound like a broken record when I say this, but the future of work is absolutely about breaking down barriers between teams and geographies. Sales should be speaking with product development, marketing should be speaking with customer service and support, and engineering should be speaking solution delivery teams. The traditional model saw only people in the same team or physical location share and collaborate; no more. The organization of the future is a connected organization where information, collaboration and communication happens without boundaries.
There’s a reason why large organizations are stereotyped as being slow-moving, bureaucratic, old-fashioned, and simply outdated…because many of them are. Larger organizations are at a high risk for being disrupted (just take a look at what’s happening with IBM) which means they need to learn how to operate like smaller companies. However, a paradox exists. As organizations grow so does their complexity which results in more sluggishness. However, these same organizations also want more profits which means they have to grow. So, they are stuck with trying to find a way to grow while becoming less complex. I talk about this much more in my book including exploring a few possible scenarios.
Organizations around the world have been making a various dangerous assumption; assuming that employees would work there because they needed to. Years ago this was definitely the case as there was really only one way to make a living. However as Dan Pink rightly commented, “today talented people need organizations less than organizations need talented people.” This means that organizations have to shift their focus from creating a place where they assume people NEED to work there to creating an environment where people WANT to work there.
Going forward “late adopter” means “out of business.” Years ago organizations had the luxury of seeing what their competitors were doing and then quickly following on their heels. Today that is no longer true. Organizations must adapt quicker and more aggressively if they wish to thrive in this new rapidly changing business world.
Innovation and Ecosystems
Innovation was something that used to be done only by a specific department within an organization. Today we are seeing a completely new model of innovation opening up based on ecosystems which includes employees, customers, partners, the general public, and yes, even competitors. Organizations that create these ecosystems will thrive.
Part 2 of this image will be released in the next few days and I will explore these topics in more detail here in blogs, videos, and podcasts interviews. But for now I hope this gives you some food for thought!