7 S Framework

This paper discusses McKinsey's 7S Model that was created by the consulting company McKinsey and Company in the early 1980s. Since then it has been widely used by practitioners and academics alike in analysing hundreds of organisations. The paper explains each of the seven components of the model and the links between them. It also includes practical guidance and advice for the students to analyse organisations using this model. At the end, some sources for further information on the model and case studies available on this website are mentioned.
The McKinsey 7S model was named after a consulting company, McKinsey and Company, which has conducted applied research in business and industry (Pascale & Athos, 1981; Peters & Waterman, 1982). All of the authors worked as consultants at McKinsey and Company; in the 1980s, they used the model to analyse over 70 large organisations. The McKinsey 7S Framework was created as a recognisable and easily remembered model in business. The seven variables, which the authors term "levers", all begin with the letter "S":
These seven variables include structure, strategy, systems, skills, style, staff and shared values. Structure is defined as the skeleton of the organisation or the organisational chart. The authors describe strategy as the plan or course of action in allocating resources to achieve identified goals over time. The systems are the routine processes and procedures followed within the organisation. Staff are described in terms of personnel categories within the organisation (e.g. engineers), whereas the skills variable refers to the capabilities of the staff within the organisation as a whole. The way in which key managers behave in achieving organisational goals is considered to be the style variable; this variable ...
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