Resolving the awkward paradox in Frederic Laloux’s Reinventing Organisations | by Tom Nixon | Maptio | Medium

I remember asking Laloux about the role of the ‘leader’ many years ago; it strongly reminds me of the classic systems ‘triangles’ game we learned from Nick Obolensky: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=41QKeKQ2O3E&t=1s

The classic question from this ‘self organising’ game is ‘who was the leader?’ and the expected answer is ‘there was no leader!’ with the insight ‘there’s no need for leaders!’ – except the event organiser gives very clear instructions and sets the rules of self-organisation; just as in any agent-based modelling, the control mechanism is the rules…

I also note that, as an archetypal ‘leader’, Jos de Blok is really interesting and potentially really problematic.

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Resolving the awkward paradox in Frederic Laloux’s Reinventing Organisations | by Tom Nixon | Maptio | Medium

Tom NixonFollowingApr 14, 2015 · 9 min read

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Frederic Laloux speaking at the RSA in London on the day I first met him

Update: This article has been shared widely in the Reinventing Organisations community. I have made a few small revisions, and added comments directly from Frederic at the end.

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This article is based on research by Peter KoenigCharles Davies has also been instrumental in developing the ideas here.

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The confession

Over dinner in Brussels, I confessed to Frederic Laloux that his best-selling book Reinventing Organisations was the very best business book I’d ever read that I couldn’t quite bring myself to recommend to others. There was something going on for me, where the stories in the book didn’t seem to match the conclusions.

When I met Frederic, I was hugely inspired, and we found tremendous common ground. Yet we couldn’t get completely on the same page. Perhaps that’s OK. After all, there isn’t necessarily only one ‘truth’ in the world. But I’ve spent some time reflecting on it and I think I’ve made some progress. I’m sharing this in the hope it’ll be useful to Frederic and others who, like me, are hugely inspired by his work. With this article as an addendum, I’d strongly recommend the book to anyone. And I’d welcome feedback to further the dialogue.

continues in source:

Resolving the awkward paradox in Frederic Laloux’s Reinventing Organisations | by Tom Nixon | Maptio | Medium