Build the structures that support agility
Unleash the full potential of your teams by creating structures and systems that support their success. We help you improve strategic alignment across your organization, apply lean governance to foster innovation, and tip the culture toward continuous improvement.
A tectonic shift is reshaping organizations.
The business and operating models of most organizations are the legacy of mechanistic systems that flourished in the early 1900s. They are associated with industry titans like Henry Ford and Frederick Taylor.
Taylor is the father of Scientific Management, and influenced the course of history by applying science to the engineering of processes and management. Rationality, empiricism, and work ethic enabled him to eliminate waste and achieve mass production. This paved the way for Ford to dominate the auto industry. Ford employed assembly lines and labor specialization to deliver 8x production efficiencies, reducing costs to a tipping point that brought automobiles into the mainstream.
The operating model used by most organizations today follows the static, siloed, structural hierarchy that fueled the growth of 20th-century businesses. Goals and decisions flow down the hierarchy, and siloed units adhere to strict annual budgets and seek approval for initiatives at every turn. The skeletal structure is strong—but also rigid and slow moving.
Why change now?
The term VUCA was first used in 1987 to describe the increasing volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity associated with the global forces of change. Since then, we have seen entire industries collapse, dominant firms be upended, and operating models become obsolete.
It’s compelling for leaders to use tried and trusted techniques to surmount the VUCA challenge and drive the growth demanded by stakeholders. But, the statistics are overwhelmingly clear that this will not work. S&P 500 data show that corporate lifespans are dwindling rapidly—from 60 years in the 1950s to under 20 years today—and, in tandem, the churn rate for leaders is rising.
Studies show that the vast majority of firms have recently restructured their organizations in an attempt to sustain performance. Yet, less than a quarter are successful. Typical approaches to restructuring soak up precious time and drain people’s energy.
We believe business agility offers a way to keep pace with emerging technologies, shifting consumer demands, increasing sources of competition, and new policy and regulation.
As old models are sinking in the face of rapid change, business agility will allow you to harness this energy, continuously innovate, and bring desired products to market—breathing new life into your firm. Studies show big gains at organizations that have successfully made the transition to agile ways of working.
How we help
We work at 3 layers of your organization to drive success
Leaders develop strategic priorities that embody vision and purpose while providing clarity for teams. They support teams by removing impediments. Flexible models for funding and resourcing ensure continuous focus on priorities.
Managers and leaders learn to coach. They focus more of their efforts on aligning teams to priorities, developing capabilities, and ensuring accountability.
A network of small, empowered teams is the primary unit of delivery. Agile practices drive rapid decision and learning cycles. The focus is on customer value.
We focus on high-leverage areas
that drive agility
Get in touch to learn more about our consulting services.