We have 3 very different business units (B to B services, B to C events and web-based retail)...but overall our business is still very small (revenues around $1.1M). I've been struggling for a while now trying to design an organisational structure because due to the size of the business everyone always seems to be wearing multiple hats...should they wear a "Marketing" hat but covering all different biz units - or better to be a "business unit" manager and try to span both marketing and operations? We are wanting to totally re-design our structure at the moment because we have lost all our staff - so it's a great time to be able to re-design from ground-zero with no restrictions. We also want to include some virtual staff in the mix to try and give us room to grow - until now we've been "busy" all the time and I get the feeling that being less "busy" would give us more scope to grow. What I'm looking for is a framework or thought structure or process that will help to develop an answer to this problem. Or someone who can help talk this through! Many thanks, David

I think the framework or thought structure on this one should be your culture. Your culture should be directly tied to what you think will drive success for the enterprise, and the structure should flow from that. Unfortunately, that means there is no one, single, right answer. The bottom line is there are plenty of structure solutions for the problem, and they are ALL good in the abstract. I think you're better off choosing one and then adapting it over time than trying to find the perfect structure ahead of time. As you said, with no staff now you have "no restrictions," but of course once you hire people, the structure might then not make sense given the new people you have on board. Do check out the resources over on Holacracy is a very decentralized approach, so it may not be for you, but they are doing some of the best thinking about structure these days in my opinion. Give me a call if you want to talk more.

Answered 7 years ago

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