The Structure of Your Business Can Define Your Success: This Is How

There are several ways to organize a company; you may choose to organize by function, by business unit, which is common in larger organizations, or by using a flatter structure. Whatever model works best for your company, it’s important that the structure be intentionally designed and not just a haphazard arrangement of functions that have been organized just to get the work distributed. Every role and function in a company should be included, and nothing should be left out.

That an organization should be meticulously crafted might seem obvious to a professional who works in a well-ordered corporate structure. However, for a growing company, the complexity is immense as workloads increase. What should go where? Who should do what? These are the types of questions that a newer company is constantly confronting to make sure all the work is done well and efficiently. Often, these questions are asked when it’s too late, and a problem has arisen, such as an activity that should have been completed and wasn’t or something that wasn’t finished on time.

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The Key Processes that Will Need a Three-Level of Review

Before any critical document goes out both internally and externally at our firm, it must be reviewed by three sets of eyes. We have found that having different team members looking at the final product ensures that any errors are found. What one person doesn’t see, the next person probably will.

Three levels of review might sound like a lot, but all that it means is that the first person generates the document, the second performs a detailed review, and the third does a final overall check to ensure that everything makes sense. Having three separate points of view on critical documents guarantees that they will get different perspectives and be more accurate.

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The Important Role of Entropy in a Business

I’ve been reading Steven Pinker’s book, Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism and Progress. I highly recommend this book if you are interested in learning more about how our civilization has progressed throughout the ages and how it can relate to your business.

One of the principles Pinker explores is entropy, also known as disorder, a concept that is useful for any business leader. He describes entropy in the statistical sense, whereby it is more probable than not that something will become disorganized and not be in an ordered state.

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Business Processes and How to Maintain Them

The one downside to working with processes is that they require maintenance. People move on to different roles or companies, the way the work is done changes and regulations are modified: variation is a constant in business. For processes to remain relevant, a business must plan and prepare for change.

I am reminded of this fact more than ever. We are currently doing an overhaul of all our processes to reorganize them by department and function. As we reclassify the processes, we are also questioning the overall design by department and improving each task. Because we are reprogramming everything for the entire company, it has transitioned into a major project.

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