The Importance of An Org Chart

Published on Sep 15, 2023

Org charts ofter suffer a dual harm of being both underused and misunderstood.

Carlo Rovelli in his beutiful book Helgoland outlines the Quantum Physics is not about alternative realities but instead about the relationship between objects. This approach puts the focus not on the individual nodes but on the interconnection between them.

It occurs to me that we often look at our org charts as alternative realities, rather that an invitation to explore, challenge and celebrate the connections between the individuals or roles in the image.

So there are two things we can do with our org charts to better understand them, and use them more fully.

1. Don't limit yourself to just one

What other distinct networks exist within your organisation? Is there a mentor network that sits apart from line management, a sports network, or perhaps some projects call for a reworking of the other heirarchies found in your business?

Model them, understand them, make sure they have adequate permissions and boundaries to be a positive force.

2. Make the lines fatter

Org charts should always be started with Role Descriptions rather than team members. Each of these Roles will have a series of responsibilities towards the company.

If they dont (or they are out of date) now is the time to update them.

If they do, start to map out how they interconnect with the other roles. Make the lines fatter. Really work up how the connections between the roles should function for health in your business.