Levels in Organisations and Role Clarity

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Conroy Fourie
Coach, South Africa

Levels in Organisations and Role Clarity

Broadly-based on the concept of the Requisite Organisation and Stratified Systems Theory (Elliott Jaques), we can distinguish the following Levels in Organisations:
  1. Level 1: SPECIALIST, time horizon short, e.g. day-to-day, perhaps sometimes week-to-week; competent "hands-on skills" to complete a task or activity.
  2. Level 2: SUPERVISORY, time horizon weekly or perhaps a few months; competent in supporting and co-ordinating workers to achieve set standards.
  3. Level 3: MANAGEMENT, time horizon a year or perhaps 2 years; competent in constructing, connecting and fine-tuning systems to optimal utilisation of resources.
  4. Level 4: STRATEGIC, time horizon 2 5+ years; being competent in a unified work system by understanding the organisation's purpose and integrating new futures, new services and products including positioning the organisation within the market context.
When organizations achieve an appropriate hierarchical organization, when people at each level are cognitively matched to the capabilities required at that level and focus on their roles at each level, clearly aware of the boundaries between levels, organizations and their people both achieve their full potential.
An important role for the CEO is to ensure that each of his/her leadership team members are clear about where in the levels he/she is and has the appropriate level of competence for that level and that he/she is interested in performing at that level.

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