Startups & Scaleups

New firms are not immune from the creeping bureaucracy and divisions that we see in larger organisations. How can fast-growing smaller firms design their own organisational operating systems to grow their early culture, not leave it behind to become a mini-corporate?

Grow your own organisational structures

The challenges of rapid growth can often lead to shortcuts such as falling back on old divided structures, poor hiring and bureaucratic management to maintain control. Too often, successful startups leave behind the strong culture they had early on, and pay the price later.

Agile development is the norm in most startups, but agile management and distributed transformation are just as important, and easy to achieve by involving employees early on.

Our simple tools and methods for distributed transformation are designed to create adaptive organisations where change becomes a routine part of how they are managed. This is easier to understand and achieve in a startup than in a large corporate that is trying to reform.

Capability and talent mapping, improvement backlogs, sprints and agile strategy and leadership are fundamentally simple approaches that can enable scaling without losing your mojo.

Service elements

  • Digital Workplace development
  • Technology adoption & culture change
  • Leadership development & learning
  • Platforms & startup ecosystems
  • Incubation and innovation
  • Connected digital strategy


Challenges we address

  • Need to become more agile
  • Silos and divisions holding you back
  • Speed up innovation in IoT
  • Involve the workforce in new tech
  • New technology-based services
  • Preparing for a world of data & AI

Typical Benefits

  • Increased adoption and utility for digital workplace technologies
  • Lower end-user support costs
  • Digital skills development at all levels of the organisation
  • Improved user engagement for digital ways of working
Old Wine in New Bottles

Old Wine in New Bottles

Sometimes change gets stuck between two worlds, and all we end up with is old structures with new branding. During a period of transition or paradigm shift, there is often an interim phase where we use new models to create a slightly better version of the old world...

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Mind the Experience Gap

Mind the Experience Gap

Some thoughts on making 'experience chasms' a bit shallower at the boundaries of traditional orgs. We’re seeing increased interest in customer and employee experience from most organisations, focused on increasing loyalty, revenues, engagement and empowerment. But...

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Between Two Worlds

Between Two Worlds

Thoughts on institutional upgrades, hierarchies versus networks, and re-wilding as an organisational design priority. This week’s ‘Lunch with the FT’ featured the social psychologist Jonathan Haidt, and he had some interesting things to say ($) about how mature...

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