The No Manager Model Has a Name: “Holacracy”

Aimee Groth on Quartz:

In its highest-functioning form, he says, the system is “politics-free, quickly evolving to define and operate the purpose of the organization, responding to market and real-world conditions in real time. It’s creating a structure in which people have flexibility to pursue what they’re passionate about.”

Reads delicious and the Wikipedia page on Holacracy is also worth a read. Per that page, most of the adopters who are using Holacracy in practice read to be smaller companies. I think communication, roles, and responsibilities are much more fluid and easy to discern at this size which makes these organizations great test beds.

What happens at 150+ employees is a different situation. Communication becomes fundamentally more expensive and that’s when we inflict all sorts of new structures, roles, and responsibilities on our teams. It’s also when such cancerous growths as politics starts to take root and because the team has become so large, it becomes harder to inoculate against these culture killing developments.

If ever there was a company to give Holacracy a legitimate chance, it’s Zappos, but I’d like to see a report card in a year.