Your Organisation Structure Is Killing Your Business

Your Organisation Structure Is Killing Your Business

It might be hard to hear but having the wrong structure can kill productivity and stop you achieving your business goals and objectives. When we talk to business owners and leaders about organisation structure they often talk about who reports into who, bringing out a clear structure with boxes, lines, names and job titles & hierarchy.

After all, most businesses have some idea of who reports into who and some idea of why. Often though this structure has never been considered alongside the business strategy. It’s time to put the structure down and review the key points below, this will help ensure you’re structured for success.

Key Processes

Think about the key processes in your business, not every small one, but the main key functions of you achieving success. Start with a blank bit of paper and draw out workflows, detailing key functions and departments you need to deliver for your customers/clients. Now, think about what support functions need to exist in order for your business to run smoothly and effectively (don’t forget to consider whether outsourcing some of these support functions is the right option for you) draw these key support functions into your model.

Business Objectives

Next, have a look at your business objectives, what change needs to take place to your key processes in order to achieve those objectives? Build on, or amend, your key processes to reflect the changes required to meet your objectives. You’re now starting to have a clearer idea of the structure for your business.

You can now start to draw up roles and reporting lines and create a structure. Unfortunately, there is no perfect structure, just the one with the least problems. Map out a couple of options and highlight challenges with each model.


Compare this model for success against your current business structure, it may be that you’re fairly close, in which case, that’s great news! If not, you need to put a plan in place to get there…STOP!

The CIPD just released (October 2018) a study about skills, this study discovered that ‘nearly half (49%) of workers have mismatched skills for their roles’. Is that really what you want for your business?

Before you go ahead and move people into new roles consider this, someone in a role can cloud your judgement of what can be achieved, for each change you’re planning to make you need to metaphorically “take the person out of it” and think, what would I expect from a person in that role. Now re-introduce that person, where are the gaps? Are they really suited to the new role?

Landing The Change

Once you’ve spent time reviewing exactly what you need from each function and role, you can build a roadmap for change. There are likely to be HR challenges along the way and I strongly encourage you to seek support with amending contracts, roles and performance management to ensure you don’t land yourself in hot water.


The way your business is structured can be the difference between success and failure. Working through this process and reviewing your people alongside any proposed changes can ensure a smoother running, high performing business.

You can absolutely take hold of this in your business, but if you want some support. Let’s talk!

Want some help structuring your business for success? Click here

Last Updated on 6 days by Hannah Ingram

Author: Gary Parsons
Gary is CEO at Talk Staff, passionate about the role that people play in helping build long-term and sustainable businesses. He sits on local business advisory boards and has been key in leading the growth of Talk Staff from inception in 2009.