Introducing Matrix Management 2.0™ to Your Organization
Many organizations and leaders have heard about “matrix management” and are eager to learn more. They are embracing the fact that a matrix needs to be managed differently, and leadership teams are ready to begin incorporating matrix concepts into their organizational strategy, but they don’t always know where to begin.
— By Cathy Cassidy, Managing Director, Matrix Management Institute
Kicking Off Your Matrix
Although the original matrix management model — Matrix Management 1.0 — is still around, it has proven to be largely ineffective in today’s complex business environment. Don’t make the mistake of adopting this old technology.
The best way to jump-start your matrix is by introducing Matrix Management 2.0™ (MM 2.0™) to the leadership team. Matrix Management 2.0™ is the most up-to-date operating system for managing a matrix, and it’s been successfully implemented in a broad range of organizations over the past decade.
Your senior leaders’ annual kick-off meeting is the perfect place to introduce Matrix Management 2.0™, but kicking off your matrix is only the beginning. Here are three reasons why:
- Matrix Management 2.0™ is an operating system for managing and leading the entire organization, and transitioning to matrix management is a major change initiative that can take years.
- Senior leaders may need training to develop the new knowledge and skills needed to successfully make this transition.
- The organization needs to understand where it currently stands in the Matrix Management 2.0™ Maturity Model before it can determine the best strategy for moving forward.
Tips for Planning Your Senior Leaders’ Kick-Off Meeting
Your senior leaders’ kick-off meeting can serve as a window into how prepared your organization is for a major transition to a modern MM 2.0™ operating system. Plan it wisely! Here are a few tips to help you steer leaders on a course that will ultimately produce results.
Get to Know Your Leaders’ Understanding of Matrix Management
Your leaders may have an outdated understanding of matrix management. For example, dual reporting is an outdated concept that is part of the MM 1.0 approach. Make sure you’re bringing in knowledge that works in today’s organizations, and not technology designed for the 1970s. A kick-off meeting can be a great opportunity to ensure that leaders have a solid basic understanding of modern matrix management.
Define Priorities for the Kick-Off
Many times, a broad discussion of matrix management is a good start; however, leaders may want to see practical applications of MM 2.0 before they are “sold” on making the transition. If this is the case, plan to begin the conversation with a close look at organizational challenges and be prepared to discuss accountability, collaborative leadership and other MM 2.0 tools and concepts that can help address these challenges right away.
Plan for Takeaways and Next Steps
Regardless of how the matrix management conversation begins, be sure it includes a plan for what leaders will learn and ends with a plan for what your organization will do after the kick-off.
- Will your leaders begin working on solutions to the organization’s immediate problems?
- Will more assessment and/or training be required?
Set the expectations right from the start. This is a worthwhile and challenging journey, which you plan for and undertake step-by-step with the goal being a successful transition.
As a suggested first step, take our free One-Minute Matrix Assessment to help identify specific areas your leaders need to focus on when managing the matrix.
After you complete the assessment, call us at 512-900-5511 to schedule a free 30-minute consulting session with a Matrix Management 2.0™ expert to discuss how you can bring matrix management to the table at your next kick-off meeting.
As the Managing Director of the International Matrix Management Institute, Cathy helps organizations and practitioners adopt the skills and methods they need to succeed in today’s complex, dynamic environment. She is a Matrix Management 2.0™ Master Consultant and the author of several books on matrix management, including her most recent publication, Managing Projects in a Matrix. She is a key contributor to the Matrix Management 2.0™ Body of Knowledge, co-developer of the Matrix Management 2.0™ organizational operating system, and a lead developer for the company.