Economics at your fingertips  

Navigating in a Hierarchy: How Middle Managers Adapt Macro Design

Marianne Livijn ()
Additional contact information
Marianne Livijn: Aarhus University

Journal of Organization Design, 2019, vol. 8, issue 1, 1-27

Abstract: Abstract With the emergence of new organizational forms promoting de-layering, downscoping, and self-management, middle managers have been under attack in recent years. Organizational design has traditionally been concerned with how top management designs organizations, and little is known about the role of middle managers in organizational design. Based on a case study of a reorganization in a leading food production company, this paper contributes to existing research on organizational design by advancing the knowledge of the role of middle managers in organizational design. It contributes to an understanding of organizational design as an iterative process that require active involvement of middle managers in designing micro dimensions of a macro design. In doing so, I provide an extension of prior work, which mainly focuses on vertical interactions and middle managers’ efforts to implement the intent of top management. I introduce a new middle manager role, designing, that relies on lateral rather than vertical coordination and interaction. I show how this role creates micro-level organizational elements needed to realize the intent behind top management’s strategy and make the macro structural arrangements work. These findings elevate the importance of middle managers in new forms of organizing.

Keywords: Organizational design; Micro design; Macro design; Middle manager strategic influence; Reorganization (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (1) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link) Abstract (text/html)

Related works:
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link:

Ordering information: This journal article can be ordered from

DOI: 10.1186/s41469-019-0046-9

Access Statistics for this article

Journal of Organization Design is currently edited by Børge Obel and Charles C. Snow

More articles in Journal of Organization Design from Springer, Organizational Design Community
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Sonal Shukla ().

Page updated 2020-05-09
Handle: RePEc:spr:jorgde:v:8:y:2019:i:1:d:10.1186_s41469-019-0046-9