Posts tagged Organizational Lifecycle
Organization Lifecycle: Early Stage

Early stage organizations are often characterized as “entrepreneurial” and “scrappy” with a “can-do” attitude that tackles every new problem expecting to solve it through pure energy and determination. Organizations that are early stage can face unique challenges in their operations. They should remain aware of the importance of early stage flexibility and autonomy, as well as the ways in which flexibility and autonomy are impacted by operational decisions to standardize.

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Case Study: Learning Resources and Supports Operates with Differing Levels of Maturity

In this case we’ll consider the (fictional) organization Learning Resources and Supports, which provides specialized learning support for students with special needs. LRS started as a program of a large education organization ten years ago, and in the last few years spun off to be an independent entity, so it could focus intensively on its unique services and growth potential. It hired an operations leader to speed its development and readiness for growth.

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Organization Lifecycle: Maturation (or Scale-Up)

Maturing organizations have committed to a strategy and are beginning to document their processes. They are characterized by a move toward consistency and measurement. Typically these moves are driven by external forces — a large grant or dramatically increased demand for services — but are sometimes undertaken proactively when leadership believes there will soon be a big change in external forces.

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Case Study: Soccer Smarts Deals with Post-Early-Stage Maturation Challenges

In this case, we’ll consider the (fictional) organization Soccer Smarts, which provides out-of-school time support to underserved youth, using soccer skills and activities to engage kids in the broader program which includes academic supports. Soccer Smarts had a national program model, operated by affiliates across several states; some affiliates offered just the Soccer Smarts program and others were massive organizations offering dozens of programs including Soccer Smarts. One of the fairly established, mid-sized affiliates was scaling up - it had been operating Soccer Smarts as its core program for several years and serving two major cities in its state, and was looking to expand to local mid-sized cities.

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Organization Lifecycle: Mature and Institutional

Mature organizations have committed to a strategy, have documented their processes, and are mostly engaged in extending their reach and seeking more efficient, effective ways of getting their work done. They are characterized by a focus on governance and protecting their operational alignment to perpetuate their ability to provide services.

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