Members navigate the matrix at Twin Cities event
Wednesday, May 7, 2014
Posted by: Barbara Francella
400 NEW members learned to navigate through companies with leaner, flatter
organizations at the NEW Twin Cities spring learning event, April 29, 2014 at
the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel in Bloomington, Minn.
Carman Nemecek, consulting director with The Ken Blanchard Companies, led a
panel discussion, "Succeeding in a Matrix Environment,” with Stacia Andersen,
senior vice president, home merchandising of Target Corporation; Tom Dixon,
vice president, pizza marketing of Schwan’s Consumer Brands Inc.; and
Simonds, senior vice president, Mill City division for General Mills.
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that reorganize from top-down to matrix structures thrive when more attention
is paid to human interaction, Nemecek said, advising NEW members to build
relationships before they’re needed to make the transition to easier.
skills are extraordinarily important in a matrix workplace, Dixon said. "Establish
a regular meeting cadence with your team and make it mandatory to facilitate
the best team relationships.”
Departments within matrix
organizations should rely on a commonality of purpose to deliver success,
Andersen said. The
most effective members in a matrix are curious, lifetime learners, who "stay
open to the ideas of others.”
"The power of a matrix organization is in our ability to access and rely on
functional experts, while leveraging the scale and passion of many to
build the business,” Simonds said, adding "Remember to use your matrix skills to reach beyond work to home, personal
relationships,children and community.”
the transition to a matrix organization may not be easy for everyone, "leaders
must understand the impact of this change, be empathetic and personal,” Dixon
members left the event with practical takeaways.
"Anytime you are working with people not in your primary work group, you are
working in a matrix environment,” said Rebecca Anderson, marketing manager, Own
Brands portfolio for Cargill Feed & Nutrition. "The great thing about the
event is that we were given a simple tool that anyone could use to succeed in a
also offered advice for success in any organizational structure. "Spend 60
percent of time on your current job and 40 percent of time on your next job.”
sending large delegations to the event included 3M, Altria, General Mills Inc.,
Kraft Foods Group Inc., MOM Brands, Mondelēz International, Schwan’s Consumer Brands Inc.
and Target Corporation.
NEW Twin Cities panelists Carman Nemecek of Ken Blanchard
Stacia Andersen of Target Corporation, Ann Simonds of General
Tom Dixon of Schwan's Consumer Brands offered insights on how
are affected by companies' leaner, flatter organizations.