Why I Threw Out Our Org Chart

What are you going to own in our business?

Paul Delaney
AMEND Consulting


Let’s paint a picture:

Generic Corporate Company X

Your Position: Entry-Level Associate

Your Job: Doing things you do not want to do for people you do not like

Your Decision-Making Authority: 0%

Your Career Path: Years of working up “the ladder”

Your Job Satisfaction: <10%

Your Life Happiness: Eh, depends on lots of stuff. But more than likely we won’t talk about that between 8–5. It’s called work life balance. Don’t let your life interfere with our work….


Is that a real thing? Can jobs actually be like that? Unfortunately, the answer is yes.

If you’re in a really sad mood and want to get even more depressed, check out www.talesofcorporateoppression.com/—these stories will really send you to the therapist!

In today’s world of hate, discrimination, and horror stories in the workplace, you’d think that companies would be doing everything to make sure that their employees are happy and empowered. But this just isn’t the case. I feel like I’m always hearing one of my friends complain about their job; whether it’s the boss or the fact that they feel like their ideas carry exactly zero weight with leadership.

This pains me. Because I know that there are so many smart and talented people out there, but they just aren’t given a chance to grow. Whether it’s the corporate structures that makes decision-making as slow as molasses or the business professional attire all day, every day,

Corporations today SUCK.

This is my passion, my drive, why I get out of bed, what gets me excited, etc.

People. People. People.

At AMEND, it’s my job to find the most talented people and give them every opportunity to lead the company and advance individually.

Yes, AMEND does management consulting. That is our day job. We improve business operations. We create capacity. We increase the bottom line. All of that good stuff — we do that. But at the end of the day, that’s not what we’re about at all.

If people don’t love life while they’re at AMEND a) they won’t stay and b) our clients won’t succeed. But, people do love it. It’s because they believe that they can create their own future with amazing people surrounding them all along the path.

At AMEND, we have this idea of “cones”.

The Cones

At AMEND we have a problem. We have a disproportionally young team and we have a disproportionately talented (and I mean scary good) team. For that reason the traditional two dimensional org chart where you have to wait until someone gets promoted or leaves to create a vacancy doesn’t work. Not long ago people joined AMEND and “reported” to the partners. With more and more people joining up the risk is that stratification occurs and people feel disconnected with leadership and their own ability to make an impact.

We now represent our organization as a three dimensional eco-system. Each strategic item, business line, geographic location, etc. is represented by a cone. The beauty of the model is that in this space there is nothing above the cone. Each cone is owned by a member of the team. There is nothing above the cone. As a result, there is nothing holding down the growth of the cone.

The Cones give people their piece of the pie and lets them choose their destiny at AMEND. You don’t have to be an excel jockey or data wizard to advance at AMEND. Are those key functions of our business? Yes. Can you still take your technical skills and advance at AMEND? Most certainly. But, a business can’t thrive on having people that are all good at the same thing. We need thinking, creators, tinkerers.

On our Analysts’ very first day, I teach them all about the cones and how they can design their own path here. They’re so used to interning at big corporations copying and pasting numbers that they forgot how to have dreams!

Come to AMEND. Want to open AMEND New York City or the AMEND Incubator? Great! If it’s a viable business option that is going to get people jazzed… we’re all in. The bigger the dream, the bigger the cone, the more value that’s driven… your ticket is punched.

True Story

Jack Johnson, a Project Leader and our Nashville Practice Leader started as an Analyst in January 2016 and when he looked into working at AMEND full-time, he said he wanted to live and work in a city other than Cincinnati. We said we’ll make every opportunity to do that, we’ll work towards that, and we hired him.

When we secured a long-term project in Nashville, he called us and said “PUT ME IN”. This was his shot to start something new at AMEND. We gave him the autonomy to not only lead projects, but to build a new business in a new market.

Since then Jack has led the project, expanded AMEND in the Nashville market, and most importantly Jack’s personal growth has multiplied.

Jack making the most of Music City.

“The speed with which I’ve grown my skillset and am learning new things have accelerated faster than I would’ve ever imagined. The people I’m meeting, the critical conversations I’m having, and the trust that AMEND is amazing. I have been empowered to lead the execution of one of our company’s highest level strategies to enable growth. To say that I’m having a blast would be an understatement.”

We did not design this. In fact, it’s the exact opposite. We took the old CEO→VP→Director→Manager→Associate bullshit and threw it out the window.

Traditional org chart: no thanks!

This is AMEND, this is where you decide your path. Not me, not your mom, YOU. We’re simply here to support you and the business within AMEND that you own.

That’s why I posted this job opening on LinkedIn today:

I’m not messing around when I say we’re looking for ambitious and motivated people who want to experience life together, not 4.0-perfect-polished-resume jockeys.

So, want to come and own your own piece of our business? Apply now.



Paul Delaney
AMEND Consulting

I write about people, recruiting, and culture. | Chief People Officer @ AMEND Consulting | www.amendllc.com