Matrix management approach

Define: Matrix management approach is an approach of managing through a series of dual-reporting relationships instead of a more traditional linear approach. Individual community members report to different organizations in order to complete a particular project or task. Matrix approach is adopted from a business perspective however; it is widely used in many product/project management situations. Any time members are grouped into teams it is likely that there is a matrix structure. Theoretically, leaders and members have roughly equal authority within the group.
Adapt: Matrix structures are more likely to exist on a temporary basis. Benefits of Matrix management facilitate rapid response to change and are more responsive because it permits efficient exchanges of information. It creates a community in which members are eager to exchange information and cooperate more closely.
Apply: I am a member of the Latino Social Work Coalition here at the University of Michigan. Our coalition works under a Matrix management approach. This has worked in that it does not allow for the leader to hold all the power. Instead the power is distributed throughout the different sub-groups including financing, detainment, and education. It helps projects move forward faster since groups are in charge of certain task and report to the entire group on their projects. It decreases the amount of time that the group must meet to discuss projects and updates. Instead of a traditional approach where everyone just reports to the leader members are to report to the entire group.

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