Reinventing Organisations at The London School of Economics

London School of Economics/RSA’s joint Reinventing Work Networking Event – October 2017

Those in attendance, were either Fellows of the Royal Society of the Arts or soon to be, all of whom were evidently from the round of introductions, high achievers with practical experience of implementing change towards the new panacea of nurturing organisations to mitigate the corporate ills of self interest, power, inefficiencies in structural hierarchy, processes, communication, blurred lines of accountability, autonomy, role and boundary.

Self Management, and Distributed Leadership are some of the concepts that are the thread of the RSA’s reinventing work network; thinking outside the box to reconcile organisational development, using Fredric Laloux’s Opus Magnum, Reinventing Organisations as the standard bearer for reshaping the organisations of tomorrow. ( See a summary Frederic Laloux thinking in the video below)

All of whom are leaning towards Laloux’s concept of organic organisations that are more sensory are building the confidence to respond more appropriately to the changing complexity of the marketplace and technological change. With Buurtzorg, Laloux’s marquee case study of self management where, health workers in the Netherlands are given complete autonomy in self management starting from a small pilot to scaling to 80% of the country’s community care provision, the dawn of reinventing how organisations relate to their internal and external customers is beginning to gather some momentum; especially with those connected with the RSA whose tagline is 21st century enlightenment, and has a network of 28000 fellows worldwide from the great and good who are committed to creating a better world for tomorrow.

Immersing myself with other kindred spirits as we try to deconstruct and reconstruct the model of an ideal future organisation with a worker centric focus with student’s from the London School of Economics grappling with an exercise and tasks set that take on thinking about Career Progression, Well Being and Full Life, The Physical Workplace and Relationships, and the Nature of Work content.

Being part of this theoretical exercise which met the needs of both the 6 very sharp international students from the LSE  and members of the network of experienced professionals committing themselves voluntarily to unpack this weighted subject matter, could be seen in some quarters as futile except for with my invitation to attend, the Reinventing Work Network sends me a knowledge pack to swot up to prepare me as a new attendee to potentially optimise my experience of the networking meeting in advance which was wholly useful and rendered me with up to date knowledge on some of the theory and case studies of how organisations are now trying to adapt to this new time. For your benefit you would do well to review the information below:-

A bit of the theory

Laloux’ work builds on a long line of thinking that originates as far as the 19th century: Sociocracy – a form of management based on consensus was first penned by French philosopher Auguste Comte in 1851. There are at least six  ‘schools’ of ‘enlightened management’ that take us to where we are today, with many more created or linked all the time.

In no particular order, I provide a link to a description of each (a web site or a video):

Sociocracy (modern version)

Holacracy (as above but designed from an IT perspective)

Lean/the Toyota way

SEMCO style (the Ricardo Semler way)

Re: Work (the Google way, from 1998)

Responsive organisations (2015)