In order to be successful businesses need to grasp the internal mechanism of their organisation and find out how they can improve productivity, henceforth increasing effectiveness and efficiency. This is where this handy tool the 7s framework or McKinsey 7s can provide an understanding.
This 7s diagnostic business tool is composed of 7s elements starting with the letter "S". (Tom.,P, Richard.,P and Robert.,W) argued that the link between the elements are conducive to each other and steers the organisation in the same direction.
The framework has two distinctive tools named hard and soft. These elements are linked together in a woven nested fashion which are named with two distinct components — the hard component aim at matter a business can influence directly and the soft component are present in a more abstract manner in the organisation culture.
The picture below provide a bird eye view of the 7s framework woven nested fashion elements. The hard elements are Strategy, Structure and Systems and the Soft elements are Style, Shared value, Skills and Staff.
A quick explanation is given below of each elements and their application within your organisation.
Strategy - By having a vision and strategy in place the business objective become clear. these elements can be found in strategic planning of an organisation.
Structure - How the business is structured and has hierarchical layers in place.
Systems - are concerned with all formal methods of operation, procedures, policies and communication flows.
Style - It's all about leadership and management styles.
Shared Value - The standards and values, ethics of a business in which vision, corporate culture and identity are the key elements.
Skills - This is more about the skills of the organisation and those of the employees.
Staff - This lies with the employees competencies and job description.
The 7s framework and its application can be best use in large organisation, SME's to trace performances issues in an organisation and subsequently change or improve these. With the blueprint or picture of these performance issues, several elements can be used to address problems. It's important in this to compare the present situation (IST) with the desired and future situation (SOLL).
The 7s Mckinsey framework constitute of a good framework to improve on current operations in which possible gaps and inconsistencies between IST and SOLL exist and can be traced as well as adjusted.
In order to shade some light in how to best use it in practice a number of questions could be asked using the 7s framework because of which a clear picture of the organisation can be drawn. After having listed these questions, it is important to provide answers to a number of obstacles such as:
The questions provide an holistic way to use the 7s framework efficiently and effectively to your advantage to improve operational performances.
Is everyone within the organisation supported in the area of the hard elements?
Are the hard elements sufficiently supported within the organisation?
Where are the similarities and differences in the IST SOLL analysis?
Which means are necessary to bridge the identified discrepancies in this analysis?
How can a plan be realised and implemented as well as possible?
The McKinsey 7s framework example - business used for my example is LinkedIn
A practical example regarding the use of the 7S model McKinsey on Linkedin is to view the social media platform as a business which has an internal operational practices.
It's also beneficial for an existing organisation to use it to better managed their general operational business management functions or for a small business to grow their internal operation and business process to achieve desired outcomes increasing efficiency and effectiveness.
LinkedIn is a business and employment-oriented service that operates via websites and mobile apps. They offer employers the opportunity to post theirs jobs availability and job-seekers to post their CV's to acquire the desired job. Hence their strategy is to connect job-seeker with employers in a view to obtain a position within the company of choice.
Given the size of the organisation, it is important that there is a proper structure, and so a product classification has been made; each branch has its own departments, representatives and support. This hierarchy is clear to both employees and users of linkedIn. In addition, due to digital disruption LinkedIn have implemented structural changes such as reporting structure, division layout, cost structure and offer different premium plan.
The organisation uses an internal Customer Relationship Management system to keep up-to-date with user, contracts and internal agreements with stakeholders. Users have an online learning and job searching environment that is linked to the internal system so that everyone using Linkedin is aware of its purpose.
Linkedin was founded 16 years ago by passionate pioneers (Jean-luc Vailant, Reid Hoffman, Konstantin Guericke, Allen Blue and Eric Ly) and has a friendly and open atmosphere right from the beginning. The current CEO Jeff Weiner as a leader, considers that it's important that work is done according to procedures and legislation, but everyone can further determine their own goals and are thus self-governing. This creates a pleasant working environment and a good mutual understanding. Bear in mind that it is only girlfridayz example and my thought on the CEO of linkedin and how it should be and may not represent what is happening within the organisation
Girlfridayz think staffs are friendly to one another within the organisation, birthdays are celebrated with cake and a small gift, drinks every Friday afternoon and the occasional appearance of the CEO on Linkedin posting a post ascerting is visibility and availability. The customers of Linkedin and users of the platform always remains top priority, both in and outside the office and within the platform.
The organisation only works with people who have made their mark in the technology industry and others pertaining area of the organisation where other skills are needed; as representatives, they can present studied material very well and apply it to their daily work. Employees are expected to know the exact guidelines and policies and how to integrate them into their practical work for the organisation.
In addition to skills, it is also important that the staff knows what their responsibilities are and dare to take it. Personal development to individual employees are offered. Performances issues are address at managerial level and support is given to address these in a positive manners in order to cooperatively find a solution so the employees progress and their performances improved to benefit the organisation.
The Mckinsey 7s is a handy tool to improve your organisation performance and grow. It looks at all levels of an organisation to ensure that the organisation has a strong hold within it environment and culture which attract potential employees due to the pleasant working environment and what the organisation stand for and known for.
For employees or others which are interesting in studying general business management functions an MBA is the course to study.
A MBA degree means master of business administration (MBA) is a graduate degree earned at a university that provides theoretical and practical training to help graduates gain a better understanding of general business management functions.
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