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The Value of Team and Organizational Structure

Who does your most senior people or talent leader report into? The answer to this question tells me a lot about how your organization values talent.

Over a decade ago, HR (as it was called) reported into the CFO most commonly. Sometimes in larger organizations, a COO would have Talent and Finance reporting into them. It wasn't until Patty McCord and other people leaders successfully changed the orientation on HR to be about people and successfully articulated People and Team as a core function necessary for the success of the organization's mission that some companies chose to align the People function with the other core business functions of Sales, Marketing, and Product.

What was most commonly conceived of as a core "risk mitigation" function, the People function transformed into a necessary component for the successful achievement of organizational goals in the same way that Marketing was responsible for customer and user acquisition and sales was responsible for revenue.

Today, you can see both models in the wild, with the People team sometimes serving a less strategic role reporting into a head of finance and other times People being viewed as the CEO's right hand.

Depending on the orientation of the organization's People team, strategic vs reactive, you see different types of people leaders. In high growth organizations, it is absolutely critical that the People function report into the same leadership as Sales and Marketing (and preferably Product) to put all of the means of productions under one leader to improve organizational alignment. In this orientation, you are more likely to make the proper investments in team and ultimately achieve your goals.

Trent Krupp

Currently Head of Product at Impact, a market network serving the entertainment industry. Previously, Head of Revenue at Triplebyte and Hired. Founded an agency in my 20's, sold it to Hired and became employee 5. Recruited for Atomic (VC), Credit Sesame and MakerSights. Helped the founders of recruitment tech startups Shift.org, Terminal and Beacon in the early days.

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