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Orga 4.0: From start-up to scale-up with a different organisational structure

Jul 14, 2017 | Founder's Views, Orga 4.0

In the past years as a founder the growth of our company has brought some interesting challenges. One of them was communication in the company – it’s a big difference if you start with only three founders, then have a small team and ultimately work in several physical offices. Every step requires a different form of communication and I would like to share some learnings I have drawn from this experience.

Hierarchy, structure, processes – you suddenly must start thinking about details and navigating challenges which were not on your radar a few weeks or months ago. Some may have suggested that we: introduce middle management, establish full blown processes and command lines.

Continuous development of the organization

That was not what we did. One of the reasons why I wanted to start a company was: Build it in a different and a better way. I don’t believe in massive restructuring every 18 months, but in the continuous and incremental development of an organization. Our goal was to derive principles that are valid while we will continue to grow for many years, retain the efficiency of a small start-up, improve communication between departments and let everyone contribute to it.

After a lot of research and brainstorming over a few months, we have implemented what we call Orga(nisation) 4.0 with four principles based on self-leadership. At the heart of which is the sense that responsibility is shared among all our team members. Those principles cover the following areas: decision making, responsibility, evolutionary organization and transparency. I can highly recommend Frederic Laloux’s work in his book ‘Reinventing Organisation’. Over the next few weeks I will share more insights on each of our principles and how they are implemented in our daily work. I also hope to gain insights from other organizations. Are you thinking about implementing something similar or have done so already? What are your thoughts about the way a modern company should be organized?

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