I currently work for a large software company, in the tech support area.  We have the traditional organization: Director, Managers, and staff.  We currently have 3 managers overseeing roughly 40 technical staff members.  The type of support we deliver is for our higher-end customers, so this is not like a helpdesk environment, we get to know our clients.  There are 3 other teams that fully comprise our department.  So in essence there are 6 managers and nearly 75 staff.

I am on the Managemnt team and have been challeged to rethink the way we are currently set-up in the organziation, or more specifically, if there are changes that could be made to enhance or make more efficient, the way we manage and lead.  I have been mulling this over, and have looked at various topics on the forums, and have seen some topics on matrix organizations, other than that I am stuck.

Any suggestions or questions?


bigdaddy1's picture

Our company is in the middle of the same "what structural changes could improve our operations/bottom line" process. 

I'd suggest that the key to enhanced performance and efficiencies is not in structural change but in culture.  Specifically making a move towards coaching/mentoring.   There is plenty of evidence to support that many of the problems structural change is intended to address could be better addressed by making a move to a coaching culture.  According to studies I've read changing structures rarely addresses the root causes of under-performance and that when they are made (not addressing root causes) over time things often end up how they were. A word of caution: not everyone has the same understanding of what coaching is or how it's conducted so be prepared for some resistance. The more you know about coaching and its positive impact the better your presentation will be.

I've had great luck with finding supportive material both on this site and at the Harvard Business Review site.

Best of luck.





jhack's picture

Improving operations means:  producing the same at lower cost / with fewer people, or producing more at the same cost / same people. 

That's a process issue.  Organizational structure should follow and promote the new process.  A new org structure, in the absence of improved process, will achieve little.  

So figure out where you can improve your processes (customer incident handling? Testing efficiency?  Better design = fewer bugs?) and go from there.   

John Hack

jhack's picture

How about adopting the Trinity (One on ones, coaching, and feedback) across the board? 

You might be surprised at how effective that is... 

John Hack

dtm1968's picture

Thank you both for the valuable insights.  These items make a tremendous amount of sense.  I think strategically we are looking for a different delivery mechanism, or how we actually deliver our service (do more with less) and that is what is driving this.  I agree with the Trinity concept, and what it can accomplish. 

Additionally, we are looking at the process of delivering support and what the customers need and ultimately what they can pay for.