Network Mapping Article Now Posted on Queen's IRC Website

By Penny Scott

About a year ago I got involved with the Industrial Relations Centre (IRC) at Queen’s when I was invited to be a guest speaker for one of their Organizational Design courses.

Meeting course participants from all sectors -- private sector, government, not-for-profit -- made it clear that the pain of reimagining how our workplaces will need to reorganize themselves in the future is universal. This realization was further cemented when I participated in the Workplace in Motion conference. Funding pressures, constant organizational restructuring, demographic shifts and technology -- all our workplaces are fundamentally reconfiguring themselves.

Traditional organizational structures don't address these changes well. Decision-making bottlenecks and critical communication gaps affect our ability to achieve business goals. Identifying expertise, talent and leadership (actual and potential) among staff is crucial to succession planning initiatives that will be able to support this new work reality. Chatting with IRC Director Paul Juniper, I showed him our video snippet of a network diminishing drastically when everyone over 50 was removed.

He immediately saw the larger-scale application of network mapping: helping  organizations deliberately leverage and engage informal, intra-organizational connections that are less “hard-wired” than are typical formal organizational working relationships.

Walking our talk and further developing our own organizational connection, we decided I would write an article on this for the IRC website. I'm pleased to announce that "Network Mapping as a Tool for Uncovering Hidden Organizational Talent and Leadership" is now online.