A Transversal Role is a role created from an existing role in the organization. It creates a bridge between two circles with a copy of the role in the circle making the request. It allows a role with the required skills to come and work in other circles.

  1. Who can use this feature?

  2. Definition and permission

  3. Transversal Roles attributes

  4. Adding a Transversal Role

  5. Assignations


Who can use this feature?

  • All core circle members may decide to add, modify or delete a Transversal Role. At a minimum, you must be a member without a role in the circle to be able to add a Transversal Role in the circle.

  • A Transversal Role is created by the circle that needs a skill it does not have.

For example, the Marketing circle needs the skills of the Designer role in the Product circle. The Product circle represents the original circle of the role and the Marketing circle represents the target circle. It is the Marketing circle that decides to create the Transversal Role, the original circle is not involved in this decision.


Definition and permission

  • All roles in the organization can be invited as Transversal Roles except if they are a sub-circle, role templates or a core role.

  • Elected roles can be defined as a Transversal Role.

  • Transversal Roles cannot be set up as leader role, representative or assigner role.

Members assigned to a Transversal role automatically become full members of the circle and can take part into the circle’s decision and operations. They can :

  • Add or suggest evolution to the circle and the roles it contains

  • Create, modify and delete Metrics, Checklists, Projects, Actions and OKRs in the role and the circle

  • Participate in circle’s meetings

  • Participate in decision-making processes outside of meetings

  • Take on new accountabilities in the linked circle


Transversal Roles attributes

A Transversal Role keeps the same characteristics as in its original circle, namely its Name, Purpose, Domains, Policies, Responsibilities and custom fields (if applicable) will not be changed.

The target circle (the one that invites) cannot change the role information in its original circle.

However, the target circle can add new governance information specific to the proper functioning of the role in the circle, if desired. Specifically, the circle may decide to add Domains, Accountabilities to the Transversal Role to specify its mission and scope in the circle.

The original circle cannot remove the link to the target circles.

What happens when a role is modified in the original circle and vice-versa?

  • If the Transversal Role is edited or deleted in its original circle, it will also be edited or deleted in the target circle.

  • If the Transversal Role is extended into a circle in its original circle, it will be deleted from the target circle.


Adding a Transversal Role

From the Governance page, in the Roles section:

  • Click on Add Role

  • Click on Invite a role to participate in another circle

  • From the list below Parent Circle, select the circle in which you want to add a role

  • From the list below Transversal Role, select the role you wish to invite into the circle

  • Add new accountabilities or domains to the role if needed. You may need to specify the scope of action of the Transversal Role in your circle.

  • Add a reason: why do you want to invite this role to participate in your circle? (For Holacracy practitioners, enter your tension)

Depending of the governance decision-making process in place:

  • Click Validate, if your organization uses the open decision process. The Transversal Role will be created immediately.

  • Click Submit if your organization uses the consent decision process. Circle members will receive a notification to vote on your proposal. If there are no objections within the validation time frame, the Transversal Role will be created.

What happens then?

  • Members who fill the role in the original circle are automatically assigned to the Transversal Role. They are notified as soon as their role is linked to another circle.

Other options to invite a Transversal Role

You can also add a Transversal Role during a meeting. The meeting should include the Agenda step and the Governance meeting results.

A member of a circle can also submit an evolution proposal and propose to create a Transversal Role in the circle.

Read also how to create a role or a circle


Assignations

Role holders of the original circle are automatically assigned to the Transversal Role. They cannot refuse to be linked to another circle.

Any member of the target circle with the right of assigning people, can then remove / assign a member, among the members assigned to the original role, to the Transversal Role.

Define a focus

You can define a focus to members assigned to the Transversal Role to clarify its scope.

Define status

You can also exclude role holders as a non-core member if you do not want them to take part in the operations, governance decisions and meetings of the circle. Choose the best option for you depending on the member's degree of implication in the circle.

Notes:

  • If a member is removed from a role in the original circle, they are also removed in the target circle.

  • If a member is assigned to a role in the original circle, they are not automatically assigned to the Transversal Role in the target circle.


Related articles

Improving the transversality of roles in the organization with Transversal Roles

How to add a role or a circle?

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