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Organizational Structure Glossary

Matrix Organizational Structure: Employees have dual reporting relationships which can span across functional areas. This commonly displayed as a grid or matrix instead of a hierarchal view. Example: Starbucks

Functional Organizational Structure: Individuals are grouped by specific functions they perform. These groups are designed to be managed independent of others, such as HR, sales, or IT. Example: Microsoft

Product Organizational Structure: Individuals are organized based on the specific product on which they work. Each product has an executive leader who oversees everything related to that product line. Example: Johnson & Johnson

Customer Organizational Structure: Individuals are organized by the type of customer they will be focused on supporting. Customer expectations are met by a customized service approach. Example: Tumi

Geographic Organizational Structure: These organizations are dispersed across one or more geographic regions and they choose to organize their people by the region in which they are located. Typically, a central oversight person leads each geographic region. Example: Ford Motor Company

Flat Structure: There are a small number of levels between staff and the executives, effectively reducing the amount of middle management. Normally, the organization has a broad span of management at each level and a manager will have more responsibility than other organizations due to the number of employees that report to them. Example: REVOLVE Clothing

Holacracy: Decision making is distributed throughout self-organizing teams rather than a management hierarchy. The roles inside the organization are fundamentally differentiated from the people working in it For example, one individual can hold multiple roles at one time. . Example: Zappos

Tribes & Squads: A form of a Matrix organization but instead of functional leaders managing the teams, project leaders do. Functional leaders may manage other things, such as career paths. Example: Spotify

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