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Assess your ways of working

Natalie Firth by Natalie Firth

Assess your ways of working

Impact of internal ‘ways of working’


This article explores the impact of internal “ways of working”. Specifically, how the intangible elements within daily interactions, decision-making, and workflow structures are pivotal for business growth, beyond just a solid reporting structure. Drawing reference to ‘open working styles’, we provide you with a tool to use as a reflective exercise for teams and leaders to assess their current ways of working against future objectives.


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What does that mean and how can you improve?

What if your internal ways of working were the single largest factor in preventing growth? Not the economy, natural disasters or climate change. Instead, the ability of your workforce to pivot and innovate in the face of these situations. To not just thrive but lead your business to full potential.

To unlock potential, turn your attention to how your people work – with each other. The minutia matters. The detail of the mundane, the day-to-day. How people interact, who and how does your workforce work every day, happy and ready to give their all to a shared goal?

By taking time to understand the importance of the way your people and teams interact, you are providing yourself with the magic levers all good leaders need, to change the direction of your business, to steer your people towards the exceptional.

At Q5, we have seen time and again that organisation structure and working culture are inextricably intertwined factors that make the difference between good and great.

If you want to be part of that success story, read on.

More than just good structure

Designing how a team works or how a whole organisation operates requires significantly more than just a good reporting structure. ‘Ways of working’ is a deceptively easy-sounding catch-all for the softer, less explicit elements that require thought and experimentation, with strong focus on your desired team dynamic.

The trick to success, is knowing where to look, the questions to ask, and having the tools to decipher the answers. But first, let’s understand what makes a healthy team environment.

An open working style is a proven, tried, and tested as key to success; to drive healthy teams and enable high performance. “Open teams are 60% more likely to achieve more, faster and 80% are more likely to report high emotional well-being” Atlassian research.

Atlassian’s report usefully describes an open working style as having:

With this in mind, what are the specific elements that generate positive ways of working?

It’s clear that in today’s world, it’s increasingly mission-critical to make positive change and adaptations to your ways of working, to enable your workforce to thrive, to deliver sustainable positive results for themselves and therefore your business. But first, we need to know where to look. At Q5, we have spent 14 years developing our MetroMap Organisation Design Framework to help meet this end.

In the tool below, you’ll find six key components of our framework that can help you unlock excellence in your teams.

Download the ways of working tool


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