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Reinventing Organizations: A Guide to Creating Organizations Inspired by the Next Stage in Human Consciousness: A Guide to Creating Organizations Inspired by the Next Stage of Human Consciousness

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Ken Wilber, A Brief History of Everything (Shambhala, 1996): An introduction to the developmental stages of people and civilization. For each role, you specify what it does, what authority you believe you should have (act, recommend, decide, or a combination thereof), what indicators will help you understand if you are doing a good job, and what improvements you hope to make on those indicators.

The central claim here is the suggestion that the organizations of the future (what Laloux calls “Teal Organizations”) will look and operate not like machines, but like living systems: With every unsettling event, we are tempted to seek refuge in separation. Our soul goes into hiding and the ego takes over, doing what it feels it needs to do to make us feel safe. But it’s a safety that comes at a cost: we now relate to others and ourselves with fear and judgment, no longer with love and acceptance. In many wisdom traditions, the highest purpose in life is overcoming separation and reclaiming wholeness. The current stage, Teal, is the one that Laloux has based his research and the book around. Teal is driven by self-management, intuitive reasoning, decentralised decision-making, wholeness, and a deeper sense of purpose. [2] Depending on the edition, Laloux goes into varying detail about the practices associated with self-management, wholeness, and evolutionary purpose, as well as giving case studies that exemplify said practices. CEOs need to fundamentally rethink their leadership teams so that their top executives focus on advancing meaningful change rather than managing the current business. The Steps to Follow Evolutionary purpose: Organizations operate as soulful entities with aspirations, and people are invited to align their personal calling with organizational purpose.In 2012, I set out to find some examples of Teal organizations and describe the factors that set them apart. To qualify, an organization had to employ a minimum of 100 people and had to have been operating for a minimum of five years in ways that were consistent with the characteristics of a Teal stage of human development. FAVI: a brass foundry in France, which produces (among other things) gearbox forks for the automotive industry, and has about 500 employees. Self-management. Teal organizations operate effectively, even at a large scale, with a system based on peer relationships. They set up structures and practices in which people have high autonomy in their domain, and are accountable for coordinating with others. Power and control are deeply embedded throughout the organizations, no longer tied to the specific positions of a few top leaders. As the rate of change escalates exponentially, the old ways of organizing and educating, which were designed for efficiency and repetition, are dying. Frederic Laloux is one of the few management leaders exploring what comes next. It's deeply different." In a similar vein, Bob Koski, the founder of Sun Hydraulics, suggested four simple statements for the yearly appraisal discussions:

This means no hierarchy or org chart for the company; we're alla hybrid version of self-employed, in a certain sense. We're trusted and valued and free.We share deeply and engage fully with every part of our being---hopes, fears, strengths, weaknesses,gratitude, humility, love, and whatever else you care to share. And when it comes to setting the vision for the future, we let the vision set itself.It's radical and beautiful and edifying and perfect. I want to hand a copy of the book to everyone I know and place it on the syllabus for every business class there is. I want everyone to be able to work this way. I'm beyond grateful that I get the chance to do so. Reinventing OrganizationsbyFrederic Laloux In this groundbreaking book, the author shows that every time, in the past, when humanity has shifted to a new stage of consciousness, it has achieved extraordinary breakthroughs in collaboration. A new shift in consciousness is currently underway. Could it help us invent a more soulful and purposeful way to run our businesses and nonprofits, schools and hospitals? There is nothing inherently “better” about being at a higher level of development, just as an adolescent is not “better” than a toddler. However, the fact remains that an adolescent is able to do more, because he or she can think in more sophisticated ways than a toddler. Any level of development is okay; the question is whether that level of development is a good fit for the task at hand. The first version of the map was finished in 2013 and was a result of a research project (sponsored by German ministry of education and research). The early version of the map presented by IMU Augsburg on the 2014 Integral Conference in Budapest, was the major inspiration source for the first version of the Reinventing Organisation Map, which was first published 2016. Digitization may be necessary for many businesses’ continued success, but in our increasingly complex world, what companies really need to do is build new forms of competitive advantage and transform themselves for the future. And that requires fundamental changes in their top leaders—not just in individuals’ capabilities but in the way they collectively steer the ship.In a self-managing, purpose-driven organization, change can come from any person who senses that change is needed. This is how change has occurred in nature for millions of years. Innovation doesn’t happen centrally, according to plan, but at the edges, when some organism senses a change in the environment and experiments to find an appropriate response. Some attempts fail to catch on; others rapidly spread to all corners of the ecosystem. But since the industrial stage is on its last legs, we are also seeing a growing number of ‘Green’ organisations emerging. These organisations increasingly feel that the machine metaphor no longer suits them and are attempting to shift decision-making responsibility to non-management employees within their organisation. Corporate values and culture, rather than rules and regulations, tend to predominate in these types of organisations. Having an inspiring purpose, supported by highly sophisticated HR practices, helps create motivated employees: in this view, the organisation is a ‘family’. Green organisations also look beyond shareholder interests and consider their role in the wider society. 4. Why does Laloux posit that the industrial stage is on its last legs? Every stage of organizational evolution is more mature and effective than the previous stage, because of the inherent attitude toward power. A Red leader asks, How can I use my power to dominate? An Amber leader asks, How can I use it to enforce the status quo? An Orange leader asks, How can we win? A Green leader asks, How can we empower more people? A Teal leader asks, How can everyone most powerfully pursue a purpose that transcends us all? It’s customary for team members to join together for a meal with the departing colleague. Everybody comes prepared with a personal story about that person’s time with the organization. Of course, the stories are meant to celebrate the person who is leaving. But again, they reveal just as much about the storyteller—what he cherishes in other people, what touches him, what he prizes in relationships at work.---the “praise meeting.” A staff retreat is a natural occasion for storytelling. The recruitment of a new colleague is another one. The CC&R welcomes new personnel in a special meeting. Each existing team member brings an object that symbolizes a wish for the new colleague. In turn, they present the object and share their wish. The practice is a wonderful way to celebrate the newcomer and make him or her feel welcome.Andin many ways, it serves existing team members as much as the newcomer, as they too get to know each other at a deeper level. Each wish is a story that reveals what the storyteller cherishes in the workplace and in their relationships with colleagues.

For his research, Laloux examined twelve organizations ranging from small (approx. 100 employees) to global (approx. 40,000 employees). These organizations varied widely in their products and missions, but shared a fundamental set of internal structures. The most critical of these was some version of the aforementioned self-managing teams. These teams, which function with almost full autonomy, obviate the need for most or all middle management, allowing organizations to make decisions and pursue goals without constantly running requests and directives up and down a chain of command. The teams know they have all the power and latitude to solve their problems. Learning to live with that amount of freedom and responsibility can take some time, and there are often moments of doubt, frustration, or confusion. It’s a journey of personal unfolding, in which true professionals are born. This passage is useful not just as a summary of the book’s thesis, but also as a demonstration of the weird conceptual blurring that pervades the text. It’s certainly true that life appears to evolve into increasingly complex systems, many of which include vast networks of self-organizing structures. It also seems perfectly valid that we can learn from and model this dynamic when structuring human organizations. However, there is no evidence whatsoever that life uses “wisdom” to evolve toward “more wholeness” and “unfathomable beauty”; these are human constructs that only apply to nature when we observe it through an aesthetic lens. While the human brain is certainly not a command center in the traditional sense, it is definitely the primary seat of executive control for the human body, and contains many hierarchical structures. Also, I know of no company that has abandoned fossil fuels or renewable energy sources in favor of running its offices on “the evolutionary power of life itself”.Modern organisations have brought about sensational progress for humanity in less than two centuries―the blink of an eye in the overall timeline of our species. None of the recent advances in human history would have been possible without organisations as vehicles for human collaboration. The organization evolves, morphs, expands, or contracts, in response to a process of collective intelligence. Reality is the great referee, not the CEO, the board or a committee. What works gathers momentum and energy within the organization; other ideas fail to catch on and wither. One of the core elements of Holacracy, which can be found in all Teal Organizations in this research, is to separate role from soul, to break the fusion of identity between people and their job titles.

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