Solidify Your Organization Chart to Improve Time Management

By Dirk Zeller

The hierarchical structure you follow can have an impact on the effective time management for you and all the employees within that structure. Unfortunately, especially with a young company, when a business grows too fast or changes too drastically, it’s easy to end up with an organizational chart that’s stunted or entangled with limbs that just get in the way.

When this happens, you can count on more of the workload shifting to the executive and leadership branches of the company.

Businesses that rely on a build‐as‐you‐go organization chart typically end up with the same structure. And it looks something like this:

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The owner or key executive is the hub of the wheel, and all the areas, departments, or segments of the business connect to the hub. All decisions, employees, customers, and problems end up on the center desk. Under this structure, the employees are rarely empowered to make decisions at a level that makes operations efficient.

In fact, this type of structure results in constant involvement from the hub, which means regular interruptions, low productivity, high frustration levels, and more work hours. Hub leaders find themselves staying late and working weekends, not because business is booming but because they’re too busy juggling all the hats to get three, four, or more jobs done by the end of the workday.

Business leaders, be warned! Without a clearly established hierarchy that distributes decision‐making and empowers employees, you — the executive or owner — get stuck as the hub, impaled by a circle of spokes.

What’s most important for an effective organizational structure is a hierarchy with a solid foundation. And the traditional pyramid organizational chart, shown in the following figure, is most widely used for good reason.

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It allows for the logical distribution of responsibility and decision‐making — and level-appropriate weights — to a larger base. It relies on a chain of command in which the responsibility levels are clearly defined. This structure fosters a sense of ownership and responsibility at all levels.

The upshot? Employees who have a clearly defined organizational chart to follow with a strong set of job tasks or job descriptions feel the highest sense of ownership, and what gets owned gets done!