God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, The courage to change the things I can, And the wisdom to know the difference. (Serenity Prayer, Reinhold Niebuhr)
An organizational structure defines how activities such as task allocation, coordination and supervision are directed toward the achievement of organizational aims (Wikipedia).
Organizational Lifecycle & Structures
Organizations go through various stages as they grow. The typical stage in the growth lifecycle often corresponds with organizational structures which are common at that stage in a company's lifecycle. These are:
- Start Up - During the start-up phase organizational structures the predominant structure is a Pre-Bureaucratic, which includes ad hoc roles and responsibilities, and lack standardization of tasks.
- Growth - As the firm grows professionalism of each function is required and the standardization and specialization of labor benefits the organization. The common structure at this phase is a Functional structure.
- Plateauing - At some point organizational growth stalls, often due to bureaucracies and inefficiencies. To jolt the organization out of this plateau, organizations often empower units in a Divisional structure.
- Renewal/Decline - Either this strategic succeeds or fails, resulting in a change in the growth curve.