The Friday Lab

Organisational design

We’ve learnt a lot over the years working alongside and inside organisations. It is through this applied practice that we’ve learnt the important and critical task of bookending any kind of foresight, strategy and even design work with organisational design interventions (or ways in which ‘things actually work’ inside organisations).

And when we mean ‘org design’ we’re thinking well beyond the traditional process of sketching some roles on a page and organising them around a hierarchical reporting structure. Knowing the org chart doesn’t necessary capture the ‘way things get done’, the alignment between individual and organisational visions, the way people interact to deliver the organisation's strategy and mission and the systems that support this action, for instance! We think designing an organisation, regardless of its size, involves a sequence of ‘integral’ design interventions that integrates people, culture, process and context.

We take some of the ideas from Ken Wilber’s Integral Theory, to consider the organisation’s design in a more holistic way, focusing on people. processes and systems. In other words, we use an integral based architecture, linking the organisational strategy with the internal mechanics and operations of the organisation. This includes a range of interventions that help to align futures and strategic planning activities with the people and culture considerations within the organisation - two essential elements to ensure that any futures activity is successfully implemented. The intention here, is orientating the organisation around the organisations preferred future and strategy.