It Takes Five Years for Holacracy to Work

Solid piece from Quartz on the state of the Holacracy experiment at Zappos. I’ve never worked at Zappo’s, but it seemed to me like a healthy culture to boldly engage in different productivity and leadership experiments. However, as reported, it does not appear to be working.

Nearly a third of the company has walked to the door. I don’t know what Zappo’s annual attrition rate has been, but I guess that is higher. When you combine this with the fact that Zappos dropped off the Forbes “Best Companies to Work For” list, you have evidence of a larger systemic problem.

To me, the money quote in the piece is, “Robertson [Holacracy’s creator] says it takes five years for Holacracy to work.” There’s a short list of the larger companies using Holacracy on their wiki, but my question is two fold: what does working mean and what company has successfully done it?