University of Southern California

Strategic Organization Design Workshop
The Center for Effective Organizations Presents Workshop June 2-5
May 11, 2009 • by News at Marshall

WHAT: Organizational design is a cornerstone of competitive advantage and performance. The ability to design organizations that are efficient enough to drive performance and flexible enough to sustain advantage is a fundamental capability in today's dynamic and competitive environment. Dynamic strategies call for new organizational forms that pose complex new design challenges at all levels and in all sub-systems of the organization.

This workshop provides participants with core principles, models, tools and examples of organization design for those who wish to develop a deeper understanding of this topic and to learn useable organization design frameworks.

It addresses the core building blocks of design, and how to put them together to support strategy, including customer focused organization and organizational approaches to facilitate innovation and reconfigurability around opportunities and strategies. It provides a foundation of knowledge to guide organization design and of tools to use in leading the design process.

The four-day workshop will provide frameworks helpful in addressing such challenges as:

  • Ensuring that the design of the organization supports the business strategy
  • Designing for flexibility, innovation, and rapid change
  • Organizing around the customers, geographies and products
  • Leveraging resources as the business becomes more complex
  • Designing effective alliances, networks, and other lateral structures
  • Governing a complex organization
  • Approaches to integrate complex globally dispersed organizations
  • Making sure the human capital approaches support the strategy
  • Implementing new designs

In short, the session will simultaneously provide core design approaches and address how to apply them in today's complex organizational environments.

Participants are encouraged to come in teams from the same company. Groups of 3 or more from the same company receive a 15% discount.

WHO: The workshop draws on the internationally recognized faculty at USC's Center for Effective Organizations and highly renowned practitioners:

  • Susan Mohrman is a senior research scientist at the Center for Effective Organizations in the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California. Her research and consulting pertain to innovative forms of organization, team-based organizations, organizational change and learning with emphasis on the implementation of new designs, and organizational design processes. Her books include Designing Team-Based Organizations: New Forms for Knowledge Work.
  • Chris Worley is a research scientist at the Center for Effective Organizations at the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California. He is a recognized leader in the field of organization development. Prior to coming to CEO, he was Director of the Master of Science in Organization  program at Pepperdine University and remains a primary faculty member in that program. His most recent book is Built to Change co-authored with Ed Lawler.
  • Edward Lawler is the director of the Center for Effective Organizations and a professor of management and organization at the Marshall School of Business, University of Southern California. He has consulted with over 100 organizations on employee involvement, organizational change and compensation. He has been honored as a top contributor to the fields of organization development, organizational behavior, and compensation.
  • The company presenter, Becky Spears, is a Director in the Organization Consulting group at Sun Microsystems, Inc. She provides organization strategy and design consulting to internal clients who typically have been experiencing aggressive business model and strategy change. After attending the CEO Organization Design Workshop in 2002, Becky developed an organization design process that she has used and evolved in working with many organizations within Sun.

Those who should attend include individuals and teams who are interested in deepening their knowledge of organizational design should attend. The workshop is appropriate for HR professionals, internal consultants, line managers, and others involved with strategic design and implementation. Although it provides a broad overview and hands on tools, the workshop is designed for people with some grounding in organizational design issues.

Teams of people from the same company are encouraged to attend. Internal consultants and human resource managers are encouraged to bring line managers, others involved in strategy implementation, and design teams.

Attendees might include:

  • Human Resource Professionals
  • Line Managers and Design Teams
  • Line Managers and Design Teams
  • Internal Corporate Consultants
  • Organizational Development Professionals

WHEN: Tuesday, June 2, 2009 – Friday, June 5, 2009

WHERE: Portofino Hotel, 260 Portofino Way, Redondo Beach, CA 90277

REGISTRATION: Spaces still available. Fees are $3,500 per person/Sponsor Company; $4,600 per person/Non-sponsor Company; Groups of three or more from the same company receive a 15% discount

MORE: This workshop can be taken to fulfill part of the Certificate Program in Organization Design. The second workshop in the Certificate Program is the Advanced Topics in Organization Design Workshop, scheduled for October 27-30, 2009.

This Strategic Organization Design Workshop can also be taken as part of CEO's Certificate in Human Capital and Effective Organizations.

CONTACT: Alice Yee Mark at the Center for Effective Organizations at (213) 740-9814 or

About the USC Marshall School of Business
Consistently ranked among the nation's premier schools, USC Marshall is internationally recognized for its emphasis on entrepreneurship and innovation, social responsibility and path-breaking research. Located in the heart of Los Angeles, one of the world's leading business centers and the U.S. gateway to the Pacific Rim, Marshall offers its 5,700-plus undergraduate and graduate students a unique world view and impressive global experiential opportunities. With an alumni community spanning 123 countries, USC Marshall students join a worldwide community of thought leaders who are redefining the way business works.