Chapter one describes how the changing world of work is altering traditional assumptions about what it takes to achieve and sustain a high-performance workplace. The corporate ladder is being eclipsed by a more nimble and adaptive model—the corporate lattice™. This model responds to an increasingly diverse workforce by delivering more personalized, and thereby more engaging, work experiences. At its heart are ways of thinking and acting—called lattice ways—that structure how careers are built, work is done, and participation in organizations is fostered. This opening chapter demonstrates how a company can use the corporate lattice model to evolve its existing efforts to adapt to the changing world of work into a comprehensive, strategic response.
Chapter two details a convergence of economic, demographic, and technological forces that have profound implications for the workplace and traditional definitions of success. The authors argue that a one-size-fits-all view of success no longer applies: Different things engage people at different points in time, making engagement more challenging than ever to achieve at a time when it is increasingly critical for producing results.
Chapter three illustrates lattice ways to build careers, defined by efforts to support the integration of career and life and provide rich growth and development experiences that help employees keep relevant in an ever-changing environment. The corporate lattice model depicts career paths as being multidirectional, with moves across and down as well as up. This chapter shows how, in a world where lifelong job security is a thing of the past, lattice organizations offer people opportunities to enhance their careers while continually adjusting their fit between work and life. It provides two important tools to aid companies: lattice career pathways and mass career customization.
Chapter four provides a tour of lattice ways to work. It explores how globalization and virtualization are changing longstanding corporate norms of 9 to 5 and location-centric work, and how they are producing significant benefits for companies that are embracing the change. It describes how matrixed organizational models, modular job and process designs, and team-based project work are creating new ways for where, when, and how work gets done. It offers insights for companies seeking to advance their current efforts and highlights the need to challenge existing mindsets.
Chapter five explores lattice ways to participate and explains how the twin forces of collaboration and transparency are providing more virtual, inclusive, and meaningful options for employees to contribute regardless of their level on the organizational chart. This chapter describes the benefits of broader participation—the many ways that people interact, share ideas, and spread knowledge throughout the company and the larger corporate ecosystem—and the enhanced engagement that results. It concludes with advice for learning through experimentation and applying experience with external social media to internal needs.
Chapter six shares three case studies of organizations that are successfully putting the corporate lattice model into practice: Cisco, Deloitte LLP, and Thomson Reuters. These studies demonstrate how each lattice way interacts with the others to create an integrated whole. To assist leaders in adopting a corporate lattice model in their own organizations, the chapter highlights each company’s results as well as lessons learned along the way.
Chapter seven shifts focus from organizations to the role individuals play in directing their own lattice journeys. It guides readers to view their skills, experiences, and capabilities as assets and to more actively navigate their careers by creating future options and being more intentional about their choices. The authors then conclude with a forecast that long-term organizational success rests, paradoxically, at the intersection of high performance and career-life fit.