Category: Leadership and Self-Organization
Sociocratic principles and practices are based on each individual developing leadership skills and sharing the responsibilities of power and decision-making that democracy lacks. What is leadership? How do we all become leaders? How do we support leaders? How does leadership depend on followership?
We need to remind ourselves that meetings are not the work. Much work is done in meetings and they can be exhausting, but the focus of a meeting is action. Determining effective actions. Defining desired actions. Evaluating failed actions. Or bemoaning lack of action.
Possible Sources of Confusion
In several contexts lately it has become clear that many of us have drifted into confusing meetings with the work, and even as the substance of organizational… Read More . . . “Meetings Are Not the Work” At FreeStandingAgility.com, Daniel Mezick has compiled an intriguing list of books that discuss various approaches to changing cultures. All organizations develop a culture, a common language and ways of doing things. They communicate in specific ways, share common behavioral expectations, and value similar values. These are not always positive or even productive. Even when they stand in the way of effectiveness and harmony, they persist. Culture hacking is changing that culture from within the organization.… Read More . . . “The Definitive List of Culture Hacking Books” Today I completed a post on organizational structure that I began writing in 2010 on “The Tyranny of Structurelessness,” an article by Jo Freeman published in various versions from 1971-1973. She discussed the problems with the women’s movement in the late 1960s and 70s that began to believe that structurelessness in and of itself was an organizational ideal that would solve the problems of autocratic rule and the exclusion of women and minorities. She defines… Read More . . . “Organizational Structure and Equality” In decision-making, one consents or one objects. Consent is defined as no objections. To object means no consent It’s very simple.
Consent has no modifiers so why should objections? No one asks for paramount or principled consent.
What would paramount consent be? Would we ask, “Are you consenting because this proposed action is the most important thing in the world right now?”
Do we examine the basis on which people are consenting? No, we don’t.… Read More . . . “Objections: Paramount, Principled, or Otherwise” Having a vision, mission, and aim are very important in bringing coherence to your organization. You can call them by different names but combining them or collapsing them is not the best idea. It can lead to confusion and allow you to miss or avoid one or another of them. And the different names may confuse you as well.
The vision is your dream. What you want the world to be. On a grand… Read More . . . “Vision, Mission, and Aim” Often heard: “We don’t use sociocracy or dynamic governance; we use consensus.” Or, “We don’t use dynamic governance; we use non-violent communication (NVC).
The simple problem with these oppositions is that neither consensus nor NVC are governance methods. They don’t come with a set of principles or practices for structuring an organization, managing operations, and ensuring that the appropriate people are making the necessary decisions.
Consensus is a method for making decisions, just like majority… Read More . . . “Equating Consensus and Non-Violent Communication (NVC) with Governance”