Aug 12, 2008

Distribution of Headquarters?



Indraneel Roy sounds the death knell of the Galactic Headquarters. The model of the top-down approach for an organization is of the industrial society. In the 21st century organizations will need to evolve a much more decentralised model of organization - Swarm Intelligence or Emergence ?

I hope other global firms realise this before they face the same problems.

As Indro posts on his blog:
To most of us who live and work in the real world it is clear that the all-American GHQ is a dinosaur waiting for a meteor shower.

Interestingly enough, the process has started already.

- A major FMCG major has decided to spread its senior leadership team in multiple locations around the world - one in the US, one in Europe and one in Asia.

- A leading global bank has broken its headquarters into 2 parts - one in London and the other in Singapore.

- A retail major has shifted all its governance for emerging markets to Brazil and China - a much smaller GHQ handles only the US business

- A leading consulting firm recently announced the end of its corporate HQs, instead choosing to locate its global Chairman in the Middle East, CEO in NY and other senior leaders in various offices around the world.

I can go on, but you get my drift. American companies are slowly waking up to a new world where 'one size does not fit all'. A multi-polar world where diverse and distributed leadership is the only way to succeed. A world where decisions need to be taken now, not later, and leaders need to stay connected to the real world of business.