Tall and Flat Organizational Structure Definition

The problem, however, is that it can take much longer to inform leaders of decisions being made at different levels of the company. Because there are so many different levels of management in a large organization, it is possible for each level to have its own rules. This means that one level of the organization can be managed completely differently than another. Obviously, this can increase the bureaucracy of the organization and hinder work. Management differences also have the potential to increase organizational costs. When starting your small business, it`s important to decide what kind of organizational structure you want to follow. Two popular types of organizational structures are tall structures and flat structures. These are related to the type of management structures you put in place, and there are pros and cons to the tall, flat structures that you need to understand in order to be able to make a decision that best suits your business goals. A flat organizational structure is one in which there are no or very few levels between managers and employees.

In this structure, the best trained employees are involved in the decision-making process. Employees are not supervised by many levels of management. It is designed to minimize bureaucracy. The flat structure is also known as the horizontal structure. The horizontal organizational structure provides employees with many opportunities to be creative in fostering a less structured work environment. Autonomy can inspire some employees to think outside the box and explore ideas that usually seem too risky, which can lead to successful innovations. The lack of a vertical hierarchy can make many employees more comfortable approaching others in the workplace, resulting in increased collaboration and more positive working relationships. Although tall structures have more levels of management than flat structures, there is no definitive number that draws a line between the two.

The disadvantages of a flat structure are that it can lead to overload, which leads to inefficiency, as more employees report to fewer managers. In addition, employees may become confused about their exact roles in the company because there is a reduced distinction between management and ordinary employees. Organizational structure or hierarchy is the key to optimizing a workforce. This has a significant impact on the success of a business. The organizational structure is often divided into two categories: high (or vertical) and flat (horizontal). Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages. The difference between a high structure and a flat structure depends mainly on the number of levels in the organizational hierarchy and the extent of control. Both structures are subject to their own advantages and disadvantages, so maintaining a structure with an average number of layers helps organizations benefit from both structures.

Apart from that, the structure that should be used largely depends on the type of product offering, industry, and customers. Organizations can also have a flat structure in their high structure, Starbucks is one example. The largest coffee shop “Starbucks” was first founded in Seattle, Washington. Starbucks did enter the European Union, including the United Kingdom, in May 1998. Starbucks specializes in selling coffee, whole coffee beans, hot and cold beverages. You are one of the successful businesses in the coffee industry. Through an interview with a manager, it became known that Starbucks operates both tall and flat structures throughout the organization. In stores, Starbucks maintains a flat functional structure, where they operate a high structure, as in the corporate sector. Starbucks has only two levels in its flat structure, which they operate in stores. The manager is the highest person and the baristas (sales assistant) are the employees. Baristas and managers work together in the same store and stay very close to the customer.

Problems, changes and feedback from baristas or clients are taken into account by managers and dealt with very quickly.

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