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  • Writer's pictureBonny Van Rest

3 elements of Teal organizations and why your organization should adopt them

As the traditional hierarchical models are increasingly facing resistance, this is a pivotal moment for organizational structures. Would you agree?

With their more rigid command chains and compartmentalized divisions, these hierarchical models are rapidly becoming outdated, unable to match the rapid pace of societal and technological evolution. The transition to dynamic work models has shone a spotlight on the inadequacies of old structures. With these models there very well can be a lack of decision-making speed, flexibility, and employee engagement. In this era where adaptability and responsiveness are key, the need for a fundamental shift in how organizations are structured and operated has become evident.

Three Persons Sitting on the Stairs Talking With Each Other
Photo by Buro Millennial

Enter the era of Teal organizations – a symbol of adaptability and employee empowerment, perfectly attuned to the needs of a workforce that’s increasingly dominated by millennials and Gen Z. 

So, why Teal organizations? 

By 2030, with over 50% of the workforce comprising millennials and Gen Z, it’s crucial to have structures that echo their values of authenticity, freedom, and meaningful engagement. Teal organizations, with their emphasis on collaboration and self-direction, are perfectly aligned to resonate with these upcoming workforce generations and are the dynamic answer to the demands of our modern workforce and marketplace. Parting ways with the rigidity of traditional hierarchies, they are built on principles of distributed authority, self-management, and evolutionary purpose.  

Here are three foundational elements of Teal organizations: 

  • Self-Management: These organizations avoid traditional hierarchies, embracing peer relationships that drive quicker, more impactful decision-making at every level. 

  • Wholeness: Teal structures invite individuals to bring their whole selves to work, fostering a culture where everyone feels genuinely valued and fully engaged. 

  • Evolutionary Purpose: Rather than trying to rigidly predict and control the future, Teal organizations adapt organically, aligning with their natural evolution, enabling them to adapt organically to changing circumstances. 

And why now? 

The pivotal shift towards a Teal organization has been researched, practiced and talked about for over a decade, but are currently regaining momentum; it's a response to the profound changes reshaping our work environments and expectations. The transition extends beyond the mere logistics of hybrid work; it's about fundamentally transforming how we interact, collaborate, and find meaning in our professional lives. The values and aspirations of millennials and Gen Z are echoed in the Teal model, making it an essential framework for businesses looking to thrive in today's fluid, fast-paced environment. 


Here are three (amongst many) advantages of Teal organization's in today's dynamic business environment: 

  • It fosters higher employee engagement by nurturing a culture of authenticity and self-expression. 

  • Decentralized, agile structures enable quicker decision-making and adaptability. 

  • The empowerment of employees drives innovation and efficiency, leading to enhanced profitability. 


The move to Teal

Embracing Teal organizations is not just an option; it’s a strategic imperative. This fundamental shift represents the future of work – a world where self-management, authenticity, and purpose-driven adaptability are key drivers of success. By adopting these principles, organizations can unleash the full potential of their workforce, propelling themselves towards greater relevance and achievement in an ever-evolving global landscape.  

The move to Teal is about challenging old myths. It shows that effective, transformative change can originate from any level within the organization, proving that structure and flexibility can coexist to enhance clarity and operational freedom. 

Has your organization adopted the Teal model? I would love (seriously, I would) to chat with you!


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