The following table shows the key interdependencies for the Structures, Management & Processes Element:

Interdependent Workplace Practices for the Organisational Structures, Management and Processes Element

The Essential Fifth Element highlights the importance of understanding the interdependence between the workplace practices described in each of the four Elements. Each bundle of practices described by an Element does not exist in isolation but is influenced, for better or worse, by the extent to which it is aligned with the others. A major reason why change initiatives don’t deliver their full potential, or even fail completely, is that the organisation as a whole is not seen as a system of interdependent parts. New ways of working in one part of the system can trigger antibodies in the others.

For example, it is no use trying to change line management roles and behaviour without the active support and encouragement of senior leaders.

As the following row suggests, leadership and employee representation must be fully aligned with the creation of a streamlined and empowering organisational structure and processes.


Co-Created Leadership & Employee Voice

Sustained understanding, commitment and persistence is required from senior teams in order to achieve the systematic alignment of organisational structures, management roles and processes with the vision of an innovative, high performing organisation.

Employee forums should also monitor and review the alignment of Structures, Management & Processes, and make continual suggestions for improvement.

Tutor’s tips:

What other Element Themes do you need to consider when contextualising your Innovation Project with this Elements Themes? Job autonomy and self-organised teamworking must be supported by a shift in the roles and behaviours of managers from supervision and control to coaching and mentoring. Likewise, operational Processes (including performance metrics) should incentivise the delegation of decision-making and minimise the need for permission-seeking.

Fluid organisational structures and ease of working across functional areas are strongly associated with creativity and innovative thinking. Line managers must also coach and encourage enterprising behaviours, proactively creating times and opportunities for employee engagement in improvement and innovation. This should also be reflected in performance metrics and incentives, with minimal need for permission-seeking.

Employee representation should principally focus on organisation-wide issues, stimulating dialogue and innovation.

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