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Matrix Management


Definition: A style of management where an individual has two reporting superiors (bosses) - one functional and one operational.

This is commonly seen in project management where an engineer, for example, reports to the chief engineer functionally, but reports to the project manager on operational project issues.

Matrix management also is common in branch offices. The accountant in the Tokyo office reports functionally to the Vice President of Accounting in headquarters in London, but reports operationally to the Regional Manager in charge of the Tokyo office.

Generally the functional reporting relationship is stronger, because the functional manager controls the individual's compensation and evaluations.

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Also Known As: dotted line responsibility
For a matrix management style of organization to be effective, the functional and operational managers must have equal weight in controlling the individuals in their matrix.

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