Seven Archetypes (the Alphabet) of Org Topologies™

Roland Flemm
OrgTopologies™
Published in
10 min readSep 13, 2023

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Updated: 3 hours ago

Org Topologies™ is a mapping of recognizable organizational archetypes in product development. We are using the following two axes for creating the two-dimensional map:

  1. Grow team-level capabilities — by deepening cross-functionality to become fluent in delivering value fast.
  2. Grow customer-centric capabilities — by broadening understanding of the problem space.

Being organizational consultants and field practitioners, we (Alexey and Roland) have assembled and generalized our recollections of many organizations that we have worked with. As the result, we’ve come up with seven archetypes.

Each of them has a recognizable name and a description of its longing — an optimizing goal. If you’ve been in the industry for at least a few years and have met several companies that differ in culture, you shall be able to recognize and guess most of these seven archetypes

Less generic and more recognizable names of these archetypes are:

  1. Y1: projects and task work
  2. Y2: component development with narrow-specialized teams
  3. A2: hopeful yet entangled teams
  4. A3: proud and autonomous teams
  5. B2: dependent teams

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Roland Flemm
OrgTopologies™

Making the working place of software development less miserable