Organizational Design: Business Literature Insights

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Courtesy of Richard MacLean & Associates, LLC

The research on which this article is based, 'Organizations in Transition,' focuses on the practical aspects of managing environmental, health, safety, and sustainability issues. It has collected information from the published literature and sought insights from senior practitioners, both active and recently retired.

The project offers professionals guidance on the latest best practices to follow and mistakes to avoid when structuring and managing EHS/S departments.

This article is the first installment in a two-part series based on the most recent research by the Center for Environmental Innovation. This installment examines published literature. Part two will summarize the feedback gained from benchmarking with 19 senior-level EHS/S professionals, comparing these current 'real world' findings with the published literature.

Many EHS/S practitioners might assume that this information is not relevant to them since they often view their issues as somehow 'unique.' As part two of this series will demonstrate, however, successful senior-level EHS/S practitioners follow well-established business practices. Yes, there are some nuances involved in EHS/S management (and they are covered in part two). In general, however, effective EHS/S leadership organizations manage these specialized issues by following business basics.

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