Monday, August 21, 2006


Cultures and organisations

There was a marathon workshop session on Saturday to think through aspects of the Trust - vision and mission and so on. It lasted over twelve hours, I have to say largely because there was no discernible process by which the sort of meanderings that always arise at these sessions would be marshalled, filtered and compacted into an agreed resolution. So lots of opening out and very little focusing down. Late in the day we got to discussing organisational shape and structure, and I found myself in disagreement with the management consultants present. Their view of what is needed is a very conventional pyramid-shaped structure with a CEO at the top. My view is that the Trust is about delivery through its programmes, and that these should have primacy, with a much flatter structure, in effect with three CEOs reporting to the First Lady and the Board. I suspect with a CEO we will have almost total disconnect between The First Lady and her projects - not good for her, not good for them. Any CEO has to take her place at the top of the organisation if he/she is to really lead the Trust, and I suspect it will then become a well-run but totally uninteresting organisation, with the First Lady playing a symbolic cypher role only. Not inspiring.


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