Flat Organizations

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This topic contains 5 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Henry Brown 7 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #164623

    Henry Brown

    Cannot visualize it happening in a government organization where the most powerful recognition is POWER but …

    from WSJ:

    Welcome to the Bossless Company

    Welcome to the bossless company, where the hierarchy is flat, pay is often determined by peers, and the workday is directed by employees themselves.

    Companies have been flattening out their management hierarchies in recent years, eliminating layers of middle management that can create bottlenecks and slow productivity. The handful that have taken the idea a step further, dispensing with most bosses entirely, say that the setup helps motivate employees and makes them more flexible, even if it means that some tasks, such as decision-making and hiring, can take a while.

  • #164633

    Henry Brown

    Commentary from Internet Evolution:

    When No Boss Is the Best Boss

    Call me old-fashioned, but I’m not entirely comfortable with the idea of a workplace that’s too democratic. I’m not a fan of crowdsourced performance reviews — at least not yet. And I’m still skeptical about the viability of a bossless workplace, an issue that’s profiled in a Wall Street Journal article today.

    At the same time, it’s tough to deny that some of the best new thinking about business is drawn directly from the success of principles of “social business” — collaboration, flattened hierarchy, mobility, data sharing. These ways of working have transformed marketing and continue to influence all areas of the enterprise.

    While the benefits of this approach are clear, isn’t going bossless asking for chaos? How can enterprises get anything at all done unless someone is there to organize things and determine the priorities?

  • #164631

    Carol Davison

    There probably are a few bosses, just much less than in a normal organization. In organizations where there is little hierarchy employees feel empowered. I’ve been in some places where it took six approvals for me to teach the same class I do every year. How long would I have had to work there before they trusted me to conduct the same old class? Didn’t the bosses have more important things to manage? Lack of bosses does away with such nonsence by necessesity.

    Question: would performance appraisals be popularity contests? For example, how would the average employee reward the budget analyst who said they couldn’t fund my project because priorities were elsewhere?

  • #164629

    Henry Brown

    another nightmare that this flat organization MIGHT address: I would be a millionaire if I was rewarded 10.00 every time I heard, that is a good idea but _ _ _ _ (fill in the blanks) the most common one in my experience was I will have to get approval from someone else.

    for a couple years, last century, I had the opportunity to work on team that 80% of performance appraisals was based on team member review. For the team leader, 30% of the appraisal was based on team member input and the other 50 percent was fellow leaders/supervisors…

    What this did was insure that there was excellent communications most of the time

  • #164627

    Corey McCarren

    So you’d say peer-review is a good model?

  • #164625

    Henry Brown

    Yes IF implemented properly, and with a sufficently large group, and with adequate controls …

    And everyone has to have COMPLETE buy-in…

    If any of the above are NOT part of the process it can become a total nightmare, One of the reasons it did not last longer than 3 years was one of the middle managers tried to game the system to her advantage and her boss decided it would be better to just “throw” it away..

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