The Advantages and Disadvantages of the Lattice Structure Used by W. L. Gore & Associates

1. Introduction

This paper is based on the case study of W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc. The company was founded in 1958 by Bill Gore and Vieve Gore. The company is known for its innovative products, such as Gore-Tex fabrics, and for its unique organizational structure.

The company does not have a traditional hierarchical structure. Instead, it uses what is known as a “lattice” structure or an “organic” structure. This means that there is no formal authority within the company. Each employee is equal to every other employee, and decision-making is done through consensus.

There are several advantages and disadvantages of the structure implemented in Gore’s company, which can be distinguished by the perspective of the organization and the employees.

2. Description of the company

W. L. Gore & Associates is a multinational corporation that specializes in manufacturing products made from fluoropolymers. The company is headquartered in Newark, Delaware, USA.

The company was founded in 1958 by Bill Gore and Vieve Gore. The company initially started as a wire and cable manufacturer. In 1969, the company developed Gore-Tex, which is a waterproof, breathable fabric. The success of Gore-Tex led the company to focus on manufacturing products made from fluoropolymers.

The company has over 10,000 employees and operates in over 50 countries. The company’s revenue was US$3.2 billion in 2018.

3. Advantages of the organizational structure

There are several advantages to the organizational structure used by W. L. Gore & Associates. One advantage is that it allows for creativity and innovation to flourish within the company. This is because there is no formal authority within the company, so employees are free to explore new ideas and experiment with new methods without having to obtain permission from their superiors.

Another advantage of the lattice structure is that it encourages communication and collaboration among employees. This is because all employees are considered to be equal, so there is no hierarchy that could potentially hinder communication between different departments or levels within the organization.

Another advantage of the lattice structure is that it facilitates quick decision-making since decisions are made through consensus instead of being made by a single individual or department.

4. Disadvantages of the organizational structure 4

There are also several disadvantages to the lattice structure used by WL Gore Associates. One disadvantage is that it can be difficult to implement in companies with more than a few hundred employees since it can be difficult to reach consensus among such a large number of people.
CHANGE THIS SENTENCE Another disadvantage of the lattice structure is that it can lead to conflict among employees since there is no formal authority figure to mediate disputes or provide guidance on how problems should be solved.. Additionally, this type of structure can be less effective in companies where employees have very different individual goals and objectives.

5. Conclusion

Overall, the lattice structure used by W. L. Gore & Associates has both advantages and disadvantages. The decision of whether or not to implement this type of structure in a company should be based on a variety of factors, such as the size of the company, the industry in which the company operates, and the goals and objectives of the company.

FAQ

Bill Gore was inspired to start his own company because he wanted to create a new type of business that would be based on innovation and creativity.

Some of the unique aspects of W. L. Gore & Associates that have contributed to its success include its flat organizational structure, its focus on employee empowerment, and its commitment to continual improvement.

The company has managed to maintain its culture and values despite significant growth by maintaining close communication between employees and management, encouraging employee input and involvement in decision-making, and investing in employee development.

Some challenges the company faces going forward include continuing to attract and retain top talent, managing global expansion, and remaining true to its core values as it grows larger.