Jack Butler talks with Chris Cowan about Holacracy, the organizational operating system

Holacracy is a serious effort to bring distributed authority, agile/lean decision-making and an inbuilt evolutionary heartbeat to running a company. It’s a governance system which you can choose to adopt to run your organization in what I would argue is a more evolved way.   It’s been adapted by my friends Decker Cunov, Robert McNaughton and Bryan Bayer at the Integral Center in Boulder as well as Tony Hsieh at Zappos in DownTown Las Vegas which I was lucky enough to visit as part of Catalyst Week in April organized by the mighty fun Catalyst Creativ crew.

Clearly Holacracy works because everything was running smoothly and Tony was nowhere to be found!

This is me at his desk 🙂  [David Allen might have a few things to say about the desk environment but there ya go ;)]

I have been wanting to dive deeper into Holacracy for a while so when my buddy Chris Cowan joined as a partner of Holacracy One, the main developers of the holocracy work, I took the opportunity to get him to give me the lowdown.

Chris speaks clearly and intelligently, I think you’ll enjoy him.  We cover what holocracy really is (and importantly, what is isn’t – lots of people use the term loosely and inaccurately to mean a flat-decision making structure, tune in for Chris’ clarification on this), what it takes from a leader fully to desire what holocracy brings, its relationship and simpatico with GTD (Getting Things Done), whether you can adopt it partially and where he sees it going in the future.

If you’re interested in emergence, more human organizations, organizational efficiency, empowering yourself and others to work more autonomously, ending the typical organizational vibe of firefighting and things slipping through the cracks, then I suggest you have a listen to what Chris has to share.  Enjoy and feel free to leave comments with any further questions, clarifications, feedback.

About Jack Butler

Jack Butler is a social entrepreneur, coach, workshop leader and speaker. His latest venture provides full spectrum human development through coaching, programmes and other development resources for leaders and entrepreneurs. He founded Future Foundations (www.future-foundations.co.uk), a leading youth personal development training organization. He is a professional member of the International Enneagram Association and a former fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. Jack was the IAB 2007 Young Entrepreneur of the Year runner-up and took a double first class degree in Social and Political Sciences from the University of Cambridge. Jack spends his time between London and Brighton in the UK and Boulder, CO and the Bay Area in the US. In his spare time, he enjoys physical challenges (3 Peaks Challenge 2010, Tresco Marathon 2006) and supporting The Simultaneous Policy Organisation (www.simpol.org.uk). He is a Partner in Passion and Purpose of the Grubb Guild, a voracious reader of personal, cultural and spiritual development, and likes to inquire, journal, travel and write.
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