Management

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Pasteur Byabeza on transitioning to self-management at Davis College

...Lisa Gill: Pastor, thank you for being here. I know that at Davis College you decided to use holacracy as a self management system. And I think many listeners of the podcast will be familiar with holacracy. But I think it would be really interesting if you could share with...more
...veys that were conducted, to gauge faculty levels of stress. So this is what sparked the need or the desire to make some kind of radical shift in our management paradigm. From there, we did many training sessions with expert practitioners, and we researched a lot on many other companies and organisations that...more
... many training sessions with expert practitioners, and we researched a lot on many other companies and organisations that are already practicing self management. Based on that, we came to a conclusion that self management is worth trying. So the next step was then to test that hypothesis. And based on the fee...more
...earched a lot on many other companies and organisations that are already practicing self management. Based on that, we came to a conclusion that self management is worth trying. So the next step was then to test that hypothesis. And based on the feedback we received with the early success of the new system in...more
...today, what are some of the biggest shifts? Pasteur Byabeza: You would see a lot, of course. The difference is that before we transitioned into self management, standardisation and centralisation with our academics and curriculum were the norm. So decision making and access to information were a privilege of...more
... resulted in disempowerment, lack of trust and frustration. So people at the bottom seemed to only work for a paycheck. There was no job satisfaction managers - middle managers would rely completely on micromanaging, using tight controlling mechanisms in order to get things done. Sometimes the result were ...more
...powerment, lack of trust and frustration. So people at the bottom seemed to only work for a paycheck. There was no job satisfaction managers - middle managers would rely completely on micromanaging, using tight controlling mechanisms in order to get things done. Sometimes the result were there, but at what...more
...eeling of fulfillment, and that's what you need when you are an employee somewhere. But now, it's completely the opposite of how things were. So self management - in a short period of time - has resulted in empowerment of every employee. There's more transparency, more accountability, more freedom to think di...more
...ns. I think the first one is I've learned to have an optimistic, positive view of my colleagues. A lead link is a little different from a traditional manager - but it is somehow the closest to it, compared to other roles. So when I say I've learned to have an optimistic positive view of my colleagues, what...more
...lf managed circle. For a self managed team to be able to make good decisions, they really need to have all the information. Before we shifted to self management, as I've said, only a handful of people at the top had access to information and people at the bottom of the pyramid could not understand the rationa...more
...ople tend to be more authentic - more true to themselves. And even more responsible. You know, traditionally, all you would really care about is your managers appreciation of your work. It used to feel like everyone is working to please one person - their direct supervisor. And that's not really good. So it...more
...Lisa Gill: Thank you for sharing. It's really interesting to hear that some real themes are coming through since shifting to self management, and information is being distributed. So suddenly, everyone has much more transparent access to information, and also the power to take part in and ...more
...ecisions that affect them. And this shift, as you describe it from having almost two jobs - my actual job, and my job of looking good or pleasing my manager - towards my job being about fulfilling the purpose of my role in the organisation and being much more connected to that. Pasteur Byabeza: Yes, that'...more
...e in the organisation and being much more connected to that. Pasteur Byabeza: Yes, that's true. You feel like all that matters to you is the way your manager sees you. And you can maneuver and find all sorts of ways to please your manager. And that's not fulfilling in the long run....more
..., that's true. You feel like all that matters to you is the way your manager sees you. And you can maneuver and find all sorts of ways to please your manager. And that's not fulfilling in the long run....more
...ose are very simple techniques that I believe people can be very intentional about and develop. So they were really helpful in our transition to self management....more
...e and how that has played a part in this shift? Pasteur Byabeza: That's a great question. I would say that our thought is that the role of culture in management is poorly understood. People should know that values, norms and beliefs derived from certain group of people will definitely affect the functioning o...more
...gure - a personal authority figure, or maybe to speak up publicly against that authority figure. So this seemingly would work in favor of traditional management structure and a little bit against flat organisational organisational structure. This cultural element of submission to authority helps those tradit...more
...ture and a little bit against flat organisational organisational structure. This cultural element of submission to authority helps those traditional managers who take a lot of pleasure in controlling and micromanaging - because they have a lot of interest in having their orders strictly obeyed and accepte...more
...oney for you to see. So I've noticed - when people in an organisation are accustomed to receiving orders and instructions about what to do from their managers, because it is in their culture, it takes them time to get used to taking the lead and getting things done without waiting on anyone to tell them wha...more
...ly seem to exercise their power to the fullest. And there is that tendency to want to seek consent, or approval from some individuals - mostly former managers. You see, part of this, I would say is because Africans lean on this African cultural perspective which is linked to this submission to authority, so...more
...: A quick reflection on that theme - because I've heard almost exactly the same thing from people in India, for example, when they have explored self management - and I'm wondering if that dynamic you're describing is a product of colonisation? Or if that's really an inherently African dynamic - do you see wh...more
... really clarifying. You were going to share some other observations from a cultural perspective. Pasteur Byabeza: Sure. I would say that most African managers display some authoritarian work orientation, as a result of what I've just said. You realise that they are mainly intent on controlling or micromanag...more
...ult of what I've just said. You realise that they are mainly intent on controlling or micromanaging. As I pointed out before, you would think African managers, use authoritarian styles to manage people because maybe some employees lacked some technical skills to make good decisions. And then they have to re...more
...also deeply rooted into our culture. And I believe, when you mentioned things like united teamwork, solidarity, they work a lot in favour of the self management paradigm....more
... change, of course, you expect some people to resist. I would say it took some of my colleagues a lot of time to fully embrace the philosophy of self management. You see, as you know, operating in a self managed team requires learning and unlearning certain things. So I can confidently say that some of my col...more
...leagues never fully embraced this shift, because different people have different needs and desires. So, I've seen some people - especially my former managers - behaving from a place of insecurity when we started rolling out self management. You see, a lot of energy had to be spent. We invested in getting ...more
...needs and desires. So, I've seen some people - especially my former managers - behaving from a place of insecurity when we started rolling out self management. You see, a lot of energy had to be spent. We invested in getting everybody on board, and we faced resistence from one team, with some people sending...more
...istence from one team, with some people sending videos. And again, of course, you're confronted with a dilemma. You don't want people to operate in a management mode that they don't think is the right for them, or maybe for the institution - that's in the videos, people can have their their interpretation. An...more
...allenges, but that's actually the main one. Another challenge that I believe we face is that no other higher learning institution had practiced self management before. So that was a very big challenge. So in an African context, or across the globe, I do not think that there are many higher learning instituti...more
...lenge. So in an African context, or across the globe, I do not think that there are many higher learning institution that practice holacracy and self management. So, because of that, you can understand why most people were a little bit skeptical. We like the idea of self management. It's brilliant - but is it...more
...practice holacracy and self management. So, because of that, you can understand why most people were a little bit skeptical. We like the idea of self management. It's brilliant - but is it really something that can work in a higher learning institution, or other organisations, or practice holacracy from other...more
...lacracy from other fields? Does it work for our business? We don't know, we don't have any other higher level institution that already practiced self management. So sometimes people may not want to try it out. Or maybe they can be reluctant because they don't have a reference. And that was really one of the ...more
...things to get done, there should be a certain control mechanism with hierarchical positions. So for them, saying that things are getting done without managers, without positions - for them, it's unthinkable. So that was the challenge - because they themselves are built, those organisations themselves, are h...more
... productive. We've seen that they start having job fulfillment - you know, you enjoy what you're doing. You feel happy - that's the freedom that self management has come along with. That contentment, in that the need to, you know, do something more - to be creative, to innovate, the need to utilise your poten...more
...our potential to the fullest. You see all of that, and many other things that I don't mention are things that have come along with this shift to self management. And I am confident - as I said. I hope that the future is going to be bright. ...more
...people listening who are perhaps in higher learning institutions, or in schools or universities or any kind of situation where they're exploring self management as well - what would be your words of advice or encouragement to someone who has walked this path? Pasteur Byabeza: Yes, that's interesting. Of cours...more
...e on this journey of discovering new ways of working together. The first one is it's very important to set up institutional culture that fosters self management. For our kids, we have this amazing cultural code - which is built around seven pillars. I can mention three of them. These are my favorites. And I b...more
...I can mention three of them. These are my favorites. And I believe if they are really well practiced, they can really be a strong foundation for self management. We practice radical transparency. That means being open and honest with others and ourselves. That's really important, and has really helped us a g...more
...e three together have really made a tremendous impact in our transition. So it's very important to set up institutional cultures that can foster self management. Another piece of advice to our to listeners is that you shouldn't expect perfect inclusion. So what I mean here is that there is no single manageme...more
...nagement. Another piece of advice to our to listeners is that you shouldn't expect perfect inclusion. So what I mean here is that there is no single management system that will be loved by everybody in the organisation - because people have diverse interest in needs. Some people will prefer the traditional m...more
...t system that will be loved by everybody in the organisation - because people have diverse interest in needs. Some people will prefer the traditional management style, because their needs are met this way. Or maybe for them, it's just okay. So as an institution, I believe you have to make a decision based on ...more
... based on reason. It's very important to have enough reasons to make the shift. So if you believe you have enough reasons to make the shift from this management paradigm to the other, please go ahead and do it....more
...Lisa Gill: Thank you. I'm so appreciative, listening to you, because it's amazing to me that you're quite early in this self management journey - and yet talking to you it's as if I'm talking to someone who has been doing this for four years or something. You know, I've spoken to peop...more

Bill Fischer and Simone Cicero on Haier and the entrepreneurial organisation

...ve it was, a young fellow by the name of Zhang Ruimin had moved from the light industry bureau within the Qingdao government to take over the general management position at what was called Qingdao Refrigerators. And the reason he moved is because they couldn’t find anybody who wanted to run the organisation. ...more
...s to work and life and everything that makes this crazy, unique culture. For example, it’s a great mix of some of the most interesting and important management thinkers from the West. Zhang Ruimin is such a big fan of Peter Drucker’s work, but really Zhang Ruimin is speaking not only from Western thinking, f...more
...the West. Zhang Ruimin is such a big fan of Peter Drucker’s work, but really Zhang Ruimin is speaking not only from Western thinking, from the modern management theory, but also from the ancient Greeks. It’s not uncommon that you are there and he quotes** **Thales or Apollo’s oracle at Delphi... And on the ot...more
...novation on a consistent basis — as a differentiator. I teach at a business school [IMD] where most of the participants who come to our programs are managers from mature, relatively old economy industries. And they’re looking for an answer. And I think what the popular management market tries to give them ...more
...who come to our programs are managers from mature, relatively old economy industries. And they’re looking for an answer. And I think what the popular management market tries to give them is often you know, kids running around in Silicon Valley in flip flops. But that’s not the reality that they’re going to fa...more
...le leader, you are empowered, there’s no other way because you understand that it’s not about you, it’s about all the other people that engage in the management and in the execution of the business vision. And so you tend to create this culture of having everybody at the same level, especially when everybody ...more
...omer…and I agree with that. **But what I’ve seen in so many organisations is that unless you have a very self-secure, self-confident, courageous, top management, you’re not going to get that because it’s only a visionary, self-confident top management that can unleash bottom-up suggestions and not take them a...more
...u have a very self-secure, self-confident, courageous, top management, you’re not going to get that because it’s only a visionary, self-confident top management that can unleash bottom-up suggestions and not take them as threats. **And so, you know, I think in a sense, Zhang Ruimin really plays that role very...more
...s curious about the human, relational aspects and what is the kind of mindset that’s needed for this way of working to thrive, especially if you’re a manager. And often when there’s a transformation an organisation, like Zappos or organisations that transform into something more decentralised — it can be v...more
...a transformation an organisation, like Zappos or organisations that transform into something more decentralised — it can be very difficult for former managers to make that shift, to unlearn that conditioning of being responsible, solving problems for other people, making decisions, not being transparent, an...more
... responsible, solving problems for other people, making decisions, not being transparent, and so on. I’m curious what that journey has been like for managers because if the if the top management — even if Zhang Ruimin is the kind of progressive leader he is — if he has a COO or someone else in the top mana...more
...other people, making decisions, not being transparent, and so on. I’m curious what that journey has been like for managers because if the if the top management — even if Zhang Ruimin is the kind of progressive leader he is — if he has a COO or someone else in the top management team who is a command-and-cont...more
...gers because if the if the top management — even if Zhang Ruimin is the kind of progressive leader he is — if he has a COO or someone else in the top management team who is a command-and-control bureaucrat, then it’s not going to work, right? How are people supported terms of those kinds of skills? Or is the...more
...pieces in the changes. At no time has Haier ever asked its employees to take a flying leap into the unknown. They’re still using the same performance management system they used 35 or 40 years ago. It’s been adapted and adjusted and digitalised and all that sort of stuff. But you know, it’s still the same sys...more
...verse architecture, because it’s been enabling people to be able to become more successful. And I think that’s really interesting, when we deal with managers of large companies — not necessarily Haier, but large companies in general — and we talk about the Haier experience, they often think about their own...more
...East… I think one interesting point of Haier when they take over existing companies… Zhang Rumin once said to me that they don’t really do helicopter management, or they don’t bring you the management from China, which is fairly common when Chinese companies are taking over European companies. So these are t...more
...aier when they take over existing companies… Zhang Rumin once said to me that they don’t really do helicopter management, or they don’t bring you the management from China, which is fairly common when Chinese companies are taking over European companies. So these are the three pillars. It’s a kind of simplif...more
...r and organisations like Buurtzorg are using technology as a way of kind of decentralising, in a way of kind of being able to get rid of a lot of the management functions — because you can automate a lot of things and use technology to really empower people to do things that perhaps previously managers might ...more
... the management functions — because you can automate a lot of things and use technology to really empower people to do things that perhaps previously managers might have done. So yeah, hopefully it will inspire… B Fischer: I’m interested in how Simone would react to this, but I think that Haier has not use...more
...h, hopefully it will inspire… B Fischer: I’m interested in how Simone would react to this, but I think that Haier has not used technology to replace managers. I think that there was a large exit of managers in the early 2000s. But that was because they changed the organisational structure. And they gave mi...more
...erested in how Simone would react to this, but I think that Haier has not used technology to replace managers. I think that there was a large exit of managers in the early 2000s. But that was because they changed the organisational structure. And they gave middle managers the opportunity to figure out how t...more
...hink that there was a large exit of managers in the early 2000s. But that was because they changed the organisational structure. And they gave middle managers the opportunity to figure out how they could contribute to the organisation…and my understanding is some decided that they would rather be middle man...more
...ers the opportunity to figure out how they could contribute to the organisation…and my understanding is some decided that they would rather be middle managers somewhere else, than go through that trouble. But I think that the other thing that has happened at Haier is that Haier has not only changed the org...more
...ike water. It’s being selfless”. It’s really about kind of surfing with what’s going on. And Alicia Hennig in this beautiful paper called ‘Daoism in Management’, she speaks about this and she says this is not going to give us many answers in terms of how we create sustainable corporations. But the question i...more
...ell as structural shifts, there -needs to be two shifts within. And one is in the people who have power — or have previously had power — in this case managers. And the other is in people who don’t have power — or historically haven’t had power — you know, employees. So like you said in that in that example...more
...hese kinds of organisations that the people who really thrive are people who are either young and don’t have much experience of a traditional kind of management bureaucracy, or they’ve come from some other context, which is so different that they’re not kind of porting over any of those learned habits. But fo...more
...neurial asymmetric effort into putting all of yourself into making something happen. And I know that for those that are, for example, into collective management and collaborative decision-making, all the stories they have been telling us for decades, and some of them are true for sure, but some of them can be...more
...d is, for me the biggest change in my life over the last two years is working with Simone, and watching how the canvases he creates, which I think if managers are really interested about this really brings them in and lets them understand the managerial choices they have to make and the consequences of thos...more

Frederic Laloux with an invitation to reclaim integrity and aliveness

...” He was using very simple but very real harsh words, but that was okay. Because now that I know, we’re going to change, and he started engaging his management team. And at first, the management team was pretty uncomfortable, and they were making jokes and saying , “What are we gonna do? You’re gonna raise s...more
...y real harsh words, but that was okay. Because now that I know, we’re going to change, and he started engaging his management team. And at first, the management team was pretty uncomfortable, and they were making jokes and saying , “What are we gonna do? You’re gonna raise sheep now, are you?” And what I love...more
... this question to you? F Laloux: I mean, I think this question of the plan B is relevant at every level of the organisation, right? So in the middle management or somewhere, if I’m afraid that if I get fired, you know, it’s the end of my world, then by definition, I won’t take many risks. And some people are...more
...es. One of the companies I think is really interesting to watch right now, a really big one, is Decathlon, this sports goods company. They have a top management but it’s sympathetic to a lot of things, you know, self-management and so on. But there have been people at the bottom and the middle of the pyramid ...more
...ave returned items and sell them at a 20% discount.” And other people from other stores looked at this and she just had to sort of convince her store manager but no one beyond that. And that was that was it. So here’s this 23-year-old that was willing to say, you know, “I’m not okay with this”, like, “I’m ...more
...just for my brand… Let’s reduce by 40%, in so many years, you know, the CO2 footprint.” Like, how bold is that? To say “I’m not gonna wait for my top management, I’m just gonna set this target. And, you know, screw it if you don’t like it! Like, worst case fire me!” I mean, she played it a little bit more cle...more
...rowth pain, for example, where you say it’s natural to experience some kind of loss, in a way, like to let go of, for example, especially if you’re a manager, those status symbols and that’s okay. ...more
...olding you back. And so for instance, one of the projects I would look at is the systems quadrants, and say, “Yeah, but most likely, there is still a manager there. Somebody who will fall back. And so people are clever. They know this.” So, yeah, I’ve been given permission. But I still know that the manage...more
...anager there. Somebody who will fall back. And so people are clever. They know this.” So, yeah, I’ve been given permission. But I still know that the manager is there anyway. So if things get bad he or she will deal with it. So something shifts when we suddenly shift that system and the team is on its own...more
...f things get bad he or she will deal with it. So something shifts when we suddenly shift that system and the team is on its own and there is no more manager to fall back on. They immediately see if they do a good or bad job, you know, because their client is happy or unhappy. Trust me, they will start mak...more
...ause their client is happy or unhappy. Trust me, they will start making decisions. But if the system isn’t set up that way, if they’re still having a manager and if they don’t see whether what they do makes other people happy or unhappy because they’re shielded from that reality, then yeah, most likely the...more
...orward to the day where there’s a tipping point. And people rather than looking at these things as outliers and pretty radical go: Oh, you still have managers and management, you still do that? Where that suddenly that becomes outdated. And we never know how these norms flip. But we know that that social no...more
... day where there’s a tipping point. And people rather than looking at these things as outliers and pretty radical go: Oh, you still have managers and management, you still do that? Where that suddenly that becomes outdated. And we never know how these norms flip. But we know that that social norms slip, that ...more
... And it’s a trivial example, but it just shows how quickly deep social norms can can flip. And I’m looking forward to the day where that happens with management. And I feel that COVID is an interesting accelerator in a way. Who knows how it’s gonna play out, but I think on all of the three breakthroughs righ...more
...en higher. And then I think the next question that a lot of organisations aren’t asking yet, but it’s gonna come is then: But what are we paying the managers to do? And they might come at it from the wrong angle, which is cost cutting, and we’re paying all these managers… but this question is going to come...more
...is then: But what are we paying the managers to do? And they might come at it from the wrong angle, which is cost cutting, and we’re paying all these managers… but this question is going to come up. So I think this is going to be a big accelerator where people are just going to wonder, like, what is the rol...more
...his question is going to come up. So I think this is going to be a big accelerator where people are just going to wonder, like, what is the role of a manager in this distributed, socially distanced world? I think the piece on wholeness is quite fascinating where people see each other’s interiors and homes...more

Miki Kashtan on the three shifts needed for self-managing organisations to thrive

...n that's more human, more adult-adult. So what for you is most inspiring about the potential of Nonviolent Communication in organisations and in self management? Miki Kashtan: Thank you. I think in the moment, as you're asking this, what comes to me most strongly, is that the focus on needs is a very powerful...more
...are expected to do things that don't want to do, you will need force to keep them in place. This is this starts with socialisation and continues with management. So that's that's the biggest potential that I see is it is a revised organising principle that if we declare that all our actions are designed to at...more
...ing we're really struggling with is, you know, how do we get people to take a shared ownership of the company? To really step in? We've declared self management, why are these jobs that are maybe less desirable or something, why aren't people really owning them?" And and when you shared what you shared just t...more
.... And, again, I think in self managing systems, this is another total paradigm shift. And it's more complex I'm learning than just "let's change this manager-subordinate power dynamic." There's so many other power dynamics and relationships to power that are sort of invisible, I think, to many of us. So I ...more
...tion, I think for this topic. Miki Kashtan: Yeah, first of all, I want to give credit to the woman who invented this distinction, who was very much a management person, but early, early thinker that did massive radical things that nobody knows about her. Her name is Mary Parker Follett, have you heard of her?...more
...e in the command and control world, so many times I talk with people, you know, at the lower level of the hierarchy who say they are such idiots, the managers because they decide things they think they know, but they make this decision and they don't ask us and we have to implement it. And we know this is n...more
...orked with a group of union activists and there was a very profound moment when they became willing to admit that if they had power, they would treat management as poorly as management was treating them. So the impulse to power over has been instilled in us, but the capacity is given to us by having structura...more
...ion activists and there was a very profound moment when they became willing to admit that if they had power, they would treat management as poorly as management was treating them. So the impulse to power over has been instilled in us, but the capacity is given to us by having structural power. So a person who...more
...cause if you don't change the systems and the agreements within which you operate, then it requires individuals to be saints. So ultimately, for self management to really be institutionalised, you need to have clear agreements, clear criteria, about when you do this, when you do that, how you function and all...more
...at are necessary I think are so helpful to bear in mind. And I think you touched on something there about agreements and structures in order for self management to work. And I think one of the myths or misconceptions about self management is it's no structures or, you know, let's get rid of structures and pro...more
...ed on something there about agreements and structures in order for self management to work. And I think one of the myths or misconceptions about self management is it's no structures or, you know, let's get rid of structures and processes. You know, it's sort of free for all. And I think there are some parall...more
...ly replicate the existing structures that we have in a patriarchal, capitalist, white supremacist, etc. world. Meanwhile people are trying to do self management and going "why isn't it happening?" It's not happening because you didn't set up the systems and structures to support it in happening....more
...al power, the people who don't, and then the system itself. In terms of those first two, in a quote unquote traditional organisation, it might be the managers and the non managers. So, beyond structures and and systems, what are the sort of human shifts that need to happen? What can I do as a human being to...more
...who don't, and then the system itself. In terms of those first two, in a quote unquote traditional organisation, it might be the managers and the non managers. So, beyond structures and and systems, what are the sort of human shifts that need to happen? What can I do as a human being to develop the mindset,...more
...talked about... So I guess in closing thoughts, then, what would be one piece of advice that you would give to listeners who are on some kind of self management journey of their own? Miki Kashtan: It can be daunting to make the shifts. I mean, I'm just listening through the ears of someone who hasn't done all...more
... someone who hasn't done all the work that I've done in the last 20 something years. And it's like, "oh my god, maybe I would just rather not do self management". So I want to say, it may be daunting. And in my experience, every step of the way, yields more freedom, and more collaboration, both. So you take b...more

Amy Edmondson on psychological safety and the future of work

...LG: And that’s a good lead into talking about leadership because managers and leaders of course are really influential in creating that environment, that climate of psychosocial safety, or not. And my sense is that, especia...more
...eople. Nowadays it’s not radical. But in practice, my feeling is it’s more challenging. Perhaps because we’re not practiced in doing it. So for those managers or leaders who are thinking: “Psychological safety sounds good, but how do I do that?”, what are you finding is most helpful in terms of supporting t...more
...gical safety sounds good, but how do I do that?”, what are you finding is most helpful in terms of supporting them in that shift? AE: You know, many managers don’t have enough emotional intelligence to be aware that other people may be holding back, or feeling afraid, or not asking for help when they need ...more
...help when they need help, or not making an observation or offering an idea, even though they have something that could be quite relevant… And so many managers, in fact maybe even most at least initially, are sort of blind to that. And there are some things I think that anybody can do to create a more psych...more
...there are some things I think that anybody can do to create a more psychologically safe environment. But first I wanna say, you started out by saying managers or leaders and I think being a manager is an official job, someone says: “You’re a manager, you’re gonna manage those people or that process” and tha...more
...dy can do to create a more psychologically safe environment. But first I wanna say, you started out by saying managers or leaders and I think being a manager is an official job, someone says: “You’re a manager, you’re gonna manage those people or that process” and that’s what you do. But leaders, I think l...more
...ronment. But first I wanna say, you started out by saying managers or leaders and I think being a manager is an official job, someone says: “You’re a manager, you’re gonna manage those people or that process” and that’s what you do. But leaders, I think leadership is a function. Leadership is an activity t...more
...leadership is a function. Leadership is an activity that can be done by anybody. We often think of leadership as maybe even a higher level or form of management, but that’s leadership with a capital ‘L’, maybe, it’s the CEO or the business unit manager. But leadership with a small ‘l’ is the small things you ...more
... of leadership as maybe even a higher level or form of management, but that’s leadership with a capital ‘L’, maybe, it’s the CEO or the business unit manager. But leadership with a small ‘l’ is the small things you do to make a difference, to influence others… Even a subordinate can exercise leadership tha...more
...all things you do to make a difference, to influence others… Even a subordinate can exercise leadership that makes your life at work better. So what managers can do is exercise more leadership, and exercise leadership over the culture or the climate. To me, the most important thing they can do is just star...more
... ahead, you know: “Wow, we’ve got this really challenging project. I’m excited about it but I’m nervous also.” So when I say something like that as a manager, I just make it so much easier for other people to say that too. I like to call this “framing the work.” Like, “it’s challenging and it’s exciting. A...more
...’ve shared in those two answers for me is about transparency and facing things as they are, instead of what I think we’re conditioned to do, often as managers, which is trying to pep talk or take care of people or set expectations that things must go smoothly, and it’s really not that at all. AE: It’s not ...more
...LG: That’s helpful. You mentioned before about this distinction between management and leadership and that anyone, regardless of their role, can step into leadership of some kind. And I’m thinking about in a self-managing team or or...more
...arn from that? What else could we try? And what contributed to that not working?” AE: And what people don’t realise is that often plain old top-down management isn’t working but we don’t know it because no one’s speaking up about the parts not working. ...more

Margaret Heffernan on how to act our way out of the status quo trap

...r negative, you've always learned something. So, I think [there is] this reluctance to experiment - and in particular, on the part of a lot of senior managers - the tendency to require proof before the experiment. So what guarantee can you give me this experiment will work? Well, if you could give a guarant...more
... started recruiting nurses in those small self managed teams. What about organisations that are really wanting to move in this direction towards self management who are traditionally structured - and I know you have worked with and written about large global organisations who have done some innovative experim...more
... that? Because that's a different challenge, I imagine. Margaret Heffernan: Well it's quite interesting. I think people make a great deal about self management. And it's important. But when I think about my own career - so 13 years working at the BBC, which is a pretty traditional hierarchical organisation -...more
...have learned that there seem to be two paradigms of leadership, or of working together. One is like kind of parent-child paradigm kind of traditional management paradigm. And there is a sort of safety and security and comfort in being both the parent role or the child role, to a certain extent. And what you h...more
...quently. Like the example I just gave. Now, organisations don't like to boast about the fact that we had a dangerous doctor, or we had an abusive bar manager, or we had a really racist accountant - and we dealt with it. Because they don't actually like - once they have fixed the problem - to remember that...more
...d also that people need to see an action before they really believe it. A lot of organisations I'm working with can declare they're not going to have managers anymore. That means everyone can make decisions, and we're self managing now. And people are often surprised when no one steps in because it takes mo...more
...an just your word or permission. You have to see it to believe it, almost. Margaret Heffernan: Yes, I think that's right. But I also don't think self management solves all problems. I think there's a great tendency in business thinking, to pursue the hunt for the silver bullet, that one thing that changes eve...more
...mostly work in are enormously complex, and one single thing or one single idea doesn't change everything. But I think that the the advantage of self management is that it makes much clearer who's responsible for what. And the things that people decide to do for themselves, they are much more likely to take r...more
...nt, become better educated. And by their better education, start to understand how to make good choices. And this can come back to your theme of self management. This absolutely cannot be done by handing down edicts, by shaming people, or by bossing people around - it has got to be co-created, I believe, with...more
...it's really hard, and it's really slow. And it's pretty labor intensive. But it's got to be done. And if we can do it, we will learn a lot more about management and governance, than we knew when we so horribly failed to alert people to the crisis when there was still a lot more time than there is now. ...more

Buurtzorg and the power of self-managed teams of nurses

...favourite bit is when I asked them at the end, what advice they would give to people who are interested in working in a self-managing way, especially managers or CEOs. And the advice they give is just priceless. It's brilliant. So it's an absolute pleasure to share this conversation with you. Here's me talk...more
...u can do it better. They are from the working floor. Chila: Yeah. They know best, actually. Marian: Listen very well. Jolanda: Yeah, you don't need a manager. [Laughter] Chila: No, we really don't need a manager. Marian: We have had in the other organisation so many managers. Chila: They were only a pain i...more
...hila: Yeah. They know best, actually. Marian: Listen very well. Jolanda: Yeah, you don't need a manager. [Laughter] Chila: No, we really don't need a manager. Marian: We have had in the other organisation so many managers. Chila: They were only a pain in the ass. Sorry! Lisa Gill: No, I love it! [Laughing]...more
... Jolanda: Yeah, you don't need a manager. [Laughter] Chila: No, we really don't need a manager. Marian: We have had in the other organisation so many managers. Chila: They were only a pain in the ass. Sorry! Lisa Gill: No, I love it! [Laughing] It's great. Chila: You can go edit it. Jolanda: You get progres...more
...'s possible anywhere, in any company. If you let the professionals do their thing together, if you support that in the right way, you don't need any manager, anywhere. I really believe that. We can do it so everybody can do it! Jolanda: But it's also nice to have a coach. That's different to a manager. Th...more
...any manager, anywhere. I really believe that. We can do it so everybody can do it! Jolanda: But it's also nice to have a coach. That's different to a manager. They support you. They don't say you have to do this or that. But they support you. And that's what you need. No leadership. Marian: Never!...more
...Lisa Gill: It's interesting that distinction between a manager and a coach, how different that is... Chila: Yeah, the coach is equal to us. Not above us. She asks, "What do you want for the team?" And then she do...more
...n the website. It's interesting, the advice the ladies give about no leadership. I can't be sure if that's just a language thing. Maybe they meant no management, you know, the kind of stereotypical top-down behaviours that we associate with managers anyway. In any case, I think my interpretation, or maybe my ...more
... sure if that's just a language thing. Maybe they meant no management, you know, the kind of stereotypical top-down behaviours that we associate with managers anyway. In any case, I think my interpretation, or maybe my belief in general is that there is leadership in self-managing teams, but it's a chosen k...more

Aaron Dignan on being complexity conscious and people positive

...with a blank sheet of paper and created or modified some really incredible ways to work. And we are sort of called to do that - as leaders, founders, managers, team members. We're called to change the way we work. So that's the core concept of it. It obviously, gets into the nitty gritty and the 'how to' q...more
...re just pushing through to the next thing. Another part of this, of course, is that there's a big ego component to this and leaders and founders and managers have a lot of their identity wrapped up in being the hero or being the micromanager being the detail-oriented one or being the one that kind of sees ...more
...d. And so, you know, I worry about individual change moving in the direction of, 'let me change you in the way I think I need to change you', or let management hire me to do that, which is even worse. So there's a challenge there. What I do think is true is that if you change the environment, if you change t...more
..., was fluid and was actually co-owned from a very early stage. What I've learned is that you can share a commons, and have self organisation and self management, if the initial kind of intent and boundaries and simple rules are in place to protect and preserve the membership. If you don't have that stuff comp...more
...what it could and should be, rather than being part of something with an intent, and then going out and manifesting that intent together through self management. So that's one thing I've struggled with - when to be heavy-handed, and when not to. And what is the work of a founder or a creator, in making the i...more
...he organisation and in the organisation has meaning. So, there's that. There's also mentorship. I mean, in a system where you don't have formal line managers, how do people get counsel? How do they apprentice to different skills and different stories? How do they get feedback? So having a generous feedback...more
...use you're like, 'wow, they're seeing the company completely differently than we are'. And what does that tell us about exactly my point about change management, right? My least favourite thing in the world is we do the analysis and the diagnosis of the company through some big assessment over three months. ...more

Peter Koenig on source, money and consciousness

...ansformation, (if I can say that way, which is also a little bit outdated). But in a sense, the people who have had traditional roles of power, like managers, yes, there's some inner work for them to do in terms of being open to other perspectives and taking responsibility for their power. But there's also...more
...here. Peter Koenig: You express this very nicely, Lisa, very very beautifully. And, in fact, it doesn't matter really where you are, whether you're a manager or not a manager, you could bring it back to the levels to Frederick's, or spiral dynamics', levels. So the way I see it, up to a certain level of, (...more
...g: You express this very nicely, Lisa, very very beautifully. And, in fact, it doesn't matter really where you are, whether you're a manager or not a manager, you could bring it back to the levels to Frederick's, or spiral dynamics', levels. So the way I see it, up to a certain level of, (for want of a bet...more
...l your connection to your inner source to actually step out and take responsibility and actually start something in life. And that's whether you're a manager in a big organisation with so-called, lots of responsibility, or whether you just have another job right down the hierarchy, it really doesn't make a...more
... just have another job right down the hierarchy, it really doesn't make any difference as far as I'm concerned. We'd like to think that people in top management positions are more heavily, more highly developed, consciousness wise. I think this would need some research, I'm not sure that's actually necessaril...more
...ower or authority and responsibility in this particular body? And who are the people there? And very often, these people are not necessarily in these management positions, it needn't be the CEO or somebody who's got the so-called powerful positions. And that's what makes this source work very fascinating, bec...more

Margaret Wheatley on leadership and Warriors for the Human Spirit

... was published in 1992, I was as optimistic as anyone could be that all you have to do to create positive change in the world, especially around self management was to present a solid theory backed up by lots and lots of evidence, organisational evidence. And my belief, which is quite naive, was that, people...more
...id this in the late 80s, to which he then put the question - and if this is true, that you'll get 35, minimum 35% increased productivity through self management, then the question he asked was, why isn't every organisation working on a self managed basis? Because everyone says, well, we want productivity, we ...more
...re. They're little moments, which, for some people now we think, Oh, that's a sign of hope. You know, we're going to convert all corporations to self management, because this works. So well. Yes, it works. So well. We've been doing that since the 70s. And I don't want to sound like an old person, but I am, an...more

Jorge Silva on horizontal structures and participatory culture at 10Pines

...ferent? Jorge Silva: Well, in order to have an idea of how we work, I feel proud of three practices that summarise all the culture and how we see the management of the company. The first one is that we make decisions in a collaborative way. And we use concerns - like in Sociocracy. The idea is that when you p...more
...r us. The second one is: in order for you to make good decisions or to take good decisions, you need information. So we have an aggressive open book management, where everyone knows all the numbers of the company, all the other financial numbers of the company - in terms of income, and how much money we pay ...more

Lisa Gill and Mark Eddleston celebrate 50 episodes of Leadermorphosis

...m a perspective of: how do we need to change relationally? How do we need to change the way we relate to each other? Particularly those of us who are managers or who have been in leadership positions, but also those of us who haven't - that there are these like shifts that need to happen in two directions. ...more
...ts, ways of being, I'm going to get lots more feedback from my colleagues in terms of how I'm showing up and the impact that I'm having. And if I'm a manager, having to let go of that power or influence or stepping in, and if I'm non-manager, or someone who has hasn't had power before then stepping up. And...more

Keith McCandless and Henri Lipmanowicz on acting your way into a new kind of organising with Liberating Structures

...ion of - we had never experienced anything like this. And this was, I remember going to some of those early workshops, where we had several layers of management, you know, six, seven layers, of hierarchy. And people who normally never almost hardly talk to each other, you know, and how the people at the lower...more
...ything and everything. I mean, the range of subjects from personal soft things, to business things - you know, whether it was marketing, organisation management problems, you name it. You know, anything. And there has never been one single occasion where the conversation didn't lead to something useful that t...more

Nand Kishore Chaudhary from Jaipur Rugs on love, collective consciousness and self-management

...having these results for themselves, what for you is really important? NK Chaudhary: I think the problem starts when we create our own identity, as a manager, as a CEO, as the owner of a company. Then we mix two things together, we mix our identity with our role. Our role is separate and our identity is se...more