The 8 Ways Companies Get Work Done and How to Align Them
For much of the last 30 years, organizations have agonized about whether they should centralize or decentralize their operations. But today that debate is increasingly moot. Every organization is essentially a distributed one, with many different options for getting work done. Our ability to “liberate” work from the organization and distribute it to its most optimal provider — anywhere in the world — is creating a new set of requirements for leaders.
To succeed in this new world of work, leaders need to focus on two things. They need to have a better understanding of the eight different sources of labor, and they need to better align the interests of these sources of work to create a unifying culture. In other words, leaders need to “use culture as the new structure.” This is a phrase coined by my friend and colleague Leena Nair, chief human resources officer at Unilever, and it captures the essence of the glue that binds together these various work options.