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The virtues of hierarchy, structure and temporary teams

How can you be successful at work? In a new podcast, two experts say sometimes a little hierarchy can help you stay sane.


structure vs. nonstructure hierarchy illustration

Illustration by Stefani Billings

We could all use a little structure — in our lives and, yes, at work (maybe they’re one and the same).

The projects we work on get more complex by the day, whether it's the technology, timezones or that sudden call from the school nurse. In this episode of the podcast Friction, Stanford organizational psychologist Bob Sutton speaks with his colleague Melissa Valentine, an assistant professor of management science and engineering who studies the way we work nowadays: observing the chaos of patient care in hospitals, coders around the world collaborating online, and more. The good news: We still like working with others, and a little hierarchy can help us all stay sane.

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