Els Carrette

Agile organisation

In recent times, unpredictability has become our only certainty in an ever-changing world. In academic and business circles, the term VUCA, which stands for Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity, is becoming increasingly common. Not surprising, given the many unpredictable events of recent years. We get thrown from one challenge right into another! Companies are also aware of this and do everything in their power to respond as quickly and as well as possible to these unexpected events by tinkering with the structure of the internal organisation.

Innovative Labor Organisations is a research-based concept where companies organise themselves in new ways. The old bureaucratic structures are increasingly being questioned. New times call for innovative solutions and structures within companies are subject to this. The goal is to give employees within the organisation enough room to respond in an agile way. Companies that stick to existing structures will inherently be more cumbersome and less agile, which means that they will quickly notice the impact of a crisis.

There are some principles that follow agile organisational structures. Of course, which principles are necessary and feasible varies from company to company:

  1. Focus on the process and the structure

    This principle ensures that employees gain insight into the entire process in which they work. All too often, employees only have a view of their own department and lose sight of the bigger picture. In an agile structure, teams no longer work by speciality, but from the service or product they produce. It makes the organisation less complex, departments that often have to work together get shorter communication lines and in general decisions can be made faster.

  2. Regulatory power where the knowledge is

    In order to facilitate these fast decisions, employees are given the space to make decisions and carry them out. Employees are trusted to have sufficient knowledge and expertise to make such decisions and will therefore take full responsibility for this within an agile work organisation. This enables the company to respond even more quickly to changes in the market.

  3. Horizontal organisation of the structure

    In an agile work organisation with autonomous teams, where the power of decision is where the knowledge is, a hierarchical structure is superfluous. Such structures often cause bottlenecks when there is a need to adapt quickly. In an agile company, the structure will flatten out and become much simpler. This way, you can quickly address the right person with your question, and they can make a decision together.

You can sense that this is essentially a completely new way of working. It has numerous advantages:

  • More autonomy for all employees
  • Taskvariation
  • Contact with all colleagues instead of just your own department
  • Short lines of communication
  • employees can think alongwith the organisation
  • The company is more flexible to deal with outside changes
  • The focus is on the process and the product, which leads to an even better product.
  • Talent development: each employee can further develop their talents within and outside their expertise. This leads to more job satisfaction and motivation.

Switching from a classic labour organisation to a flexible one can be quite challenging. At Squadron we gladly support you to implement this change and to make your company more agile.

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