Ashridge Business School Organisational Design

Ashridge Business School Organisational Design

Program Overview

This program is designed around a rigorous framework for making organization structure decisions and for identifying linking processes, skills and attitudes that are needed to make the design work. This is an opportunity to improve your skills in an area where most companies fall short.

You will learn:

  • The theory and tools of organization design work, including organizational charts, a language for organizational roles and relationships, the nine tests of good organization design and a tool for defining decision responsibilities
  • The process of organization design – the steps of analysis, who should be involved, how long it should take, how changes should be communicated and your role in the process
  • The methods other participants have used in their business design work.

Content and Structure

Residential Phase

The tools and frameworks are presented to you, then applied through short exercises based on case studies or current organizational challenges that you face. More involved case studies are used to help you link the tools together.

Syndicate groups are used to help you share your experiences and support each other as you learn together. Action learning groups help you develop new perspectives about your issues. The program focuses on:

  • The Star Model – a framework for understanding organizations
  • The Stakeholder Model – for assessing organization performance
  • A list of structural archetypes that define the main alternative ways of structuring an organization
  • The organizational model – a method for drawing organization charts that communicates the relationships that should exist between different parts of the structure
  • A language for roles and relationships to help clarify the part that each element in the structure plays in helping the organization succeed
  • A list of ten levers that can be used by designers to help make the organization more effective  – four hard levers (such as structure) and six soft levers (such as rewards)
  • The nine tests of organization design (see the model below)
  • A framework for understanding strategy so that it can be translated into implications for organization design
  • The RAPID tool for allocating responsibilities for decisions
  • A process for doing organization design work  involving a diagnostic, listing design criteria, developing options, evaluating preferred options and communicating and implementing change.