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What is a "highly matrixed organization" ?

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The concept is that you have two bosses. One is your functional manager i.e. the person who mentors you, does your review and effectively owns you. That person is your real and true boss. The other is normally some sort of lead or project manager. This person "rents you out" from the functional manager for a particular project. So the FM is the one you always deal with and go to for multiple issues. The other is the part time boss that assigns you day to day stuff for their particular project. You would then charge time to that particular project.

In an ideal world this works well. Problem is functional managers tend to assign you to multiple program managers so you do end up the multiple boss issue where their project is always top priority. A good functional manager is always aware what projects their team are allocated to and ensure their staff never gets pulled in too many directions.

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The concept is that you have two bosses. One is your functional manager i.e. the person who mentors you, does your review and effectively owns you. That person is your real and true boss. The other is normally some sort of lead or project manager. This person "rents you out" from the functional manager for a particular project. So the FM is the one you always deal with and go to for multiple issues. The other is the part time boss that assigns you day to day stuff for their particular project. You would then charge time to that particular project.

In an ideal world this works well. Problem is functional managers tend to assign you to multiple program managers so you do end up the multiple boss issue where their project is always top priority. A good functional manager is always aware what projects their team are allocated to and ensure their staff never gets pulled in too many directions.

Ok. That sounds like every place I've ever worked. Is there anyone working for a Fortune 500 who doesn't work for a matrixed organization?


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Not Me :-) I have at least 4 bosses at any given time.


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A matrixed organisation has a structure unlike the typical pyramid hierarchy. There are two or more axes, each with their own herarchical command, yet at the same time have lateral communication and influence with the other axis. In simple terms, the company could for all practical purposes appear to be distinct operations, with their own management structure, yet they are fused together and expected to accommodate and support each other.


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The concept is that you have two bosses. One is your functional manager i.e. the person who mentors you, does your review and effectively owns you. That person is your real and true boss. The other is normally some sort of lead or project manager. This person "rents you out" from the functional manager for a particular project. So the FM is the one you always deal with and go to for multiple issues. The other is the part time boss that assigns you day to day stuff for their particular project. You would then charge time to that particular project.

In an ideal world this works well. Problem is functional managers tend to assign you to multiple program managers so you do end up the multiple boss issue where their project is always top priority. A good functional manager is always aware what projects their team are allocated to and ensure their staff never gets pulled in too many directions.

Thank you for that!

I have a GF at FedEx who's always on about being matrixed to Sales and I'm all.. whaaaat? <g>


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Here are more links that I love:

Arriving in America, The POE Drill

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Ok. That sounds like every place I've ever worked. Is there anyone working for a Fortune 500 who doesn't work for a matrixed organization?

It's true. It just means that more than 1 person can boss you around :crying:

Edited by tom&tata

I-130

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April 11, 2005 : DS 230 is generated

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Sep 14, 2005 : RFE on I-864

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