The Future of Organization – a video presentation on the major themes and some new provocations

Office building in New York

There's a lot to think about when it comes to the future of organization, and plenty to be optimistic about. Saying that, like any and all topics worth grappling with, it takes a bit of time to get up to speed on the depth and breadth of things. As a member of the advisory council for the Future of Work community, and part of the steering group for The Responsive Organization community, I know I'm not the only one looking to communicate these ideas effectively.

Mike Grafham and I talked about compiling a three-minute explanatory video, and I failed woefully at such brevity. This 42-minute video presentation aims to provide a relatively speedy immersion in some of the main themes, spanning human rights, complexity science, the death of heuristics, the six influence flows, personal knowledge mastery, social physics, trust, the digital nervous system, Web 3.0, performance and learning, public relations, collective intelligence, sociocracy, Holacracy, podularity, wirearchy, emergent civilzation, self-organization, organized self, socioveillance, the middleware corporate, Bread incorporated, distributed autonomous corporates, and the Mozilla manifesto.

If this is up your street, do think about subscribing to Social Business Design magazine for Flipboard too.



The Slideshare and YouTube versions

You can view the video on YouTube if you prefer, and here's the stack in Slideshare so you can click all those hyperlinks in the footer.

The Slideshare page lists the slide contents as free text, and I've pasted below the transcript of my voiceover just in case it's useful to anyone, and for good old-fashioned SEO purposes of course.

  1. Hi, I’m Philip Sheldrake. The Future of Organization fascinates me. We are all involved in many organizations to varying degrees of personal dissatisfaction, satisfaction and delight. We all then have a personal interest in organization working better tomorrow than it does today.
  2. Here’s a bold goal – eliminating compromise in organizational life. What a utopian aspiration! We’re going to cover all sorts of ideas, with the intention of being interesting, of being provocative, but not comprehensive. Just so you know. There’s a lot of relevant stuff from a lot of great people out there I haven’t had time to reference.
  3. This video comes one year from my book Attenzi – a social business story, and three years from my first book, The Business of Influence. I mention that because you’ll find some of the ideas presented here written there. But the majority of slides here reference other stuff. Thanks to those in the Future of Work community and The Responsive Organization who took the time to review and comment on a draft version of this stack. Much appreciated. In fact, such collective activity is the very object of focus here.
  4. We’re talking about every and all situations where people come together to do something they might not achieve alone – so not just organizations in the legal, corporate sense.
  5. We organize ourselves to achieve things we can’t achieve singly, or to achieve them more productively, more consistently and more speedily. Nevertheless, we haven’t mastered organization by any stretch of the imagination. It’s too difficult … to give all one can give and to derive all the value there is to derive.
  6. When it comes to those incorporated organizations, a recent and well reported Gallup poll pegged engaged employees around 1 in 8 of the workforce. Ouch. Even worse, nearly a quarter could be described, perhaps uncharitably, as deadweight.
  7. So we have a distinct opportunity. You might say that seven in eight people think the only way is up! So let’s crack on.
  8. All human beings … should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. This is a quote from the 1st article of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. I like it. The aspiration to foster such kinship is surely a great place to start here. Perhaps our understanding of and approach to organization has been too immature to date to live up to this intent.
  9. President Lincoln championed the principles of human equality, and his advocacy of government of the people, by the people, for the people is well known. Government is organization, so I’ve cheekily expanded his proclamation from government to all organization. This is a polemic. It gets us thinking. And perhaps reactions to this run from “surely not!” to “ah, if only.” Simon Terry alludes to the same sort of thing with his blog post titled…
  10. If your company was a country, would you live there? An interesting challenge. The Democracy Index by the Economist Intelligence Unit ranks all countries, from 1st placed Norway all the way down to North Korea in last place. I wonder where your company might slot in. What about the other organizations you’re part of?
  11. Sociology is the scientific study of human social behavior and its origins, development, organizations, and institutions. So we’re talking sociology here. This is how Philip Selznick, a professor of sociology and noted author, described sociology’s contribution towards the close of the last century.
  12. We’re social animals. It’s part of being human. So after all these millennia, why do we find organization so damn difficult?
  13. Complexity is a good part of the answer. When anyone asks me to recommend an introductory text to the topic of complexity, this is where I point them. And what a perfect book title for our context here, for most every organization involves more than two people.
  14. Here’s a reasonably short definition. The last bullet refers to emergent behaviour, which is the name we give the appearance of patterns, of unexpected order arising from many otherwise simple interactions. It’s interesting to read this three point definition again, but this time as the definition of the word “social” for example, or indeed “organization”.
  15. This slide portrays complexity. The pattern you see here is the result of a very simple function known as cellular automata. The upper dot identifies a point where a chaotic cascade becomes ordered – we get emergence – and the lower dot identifies just the opposite. Complexity is a system with a seemingly random mix of chaos and order.
  16. The 19th Century philosopher and psychologist GH Lewes is credited with coining the phrase emergence, but complexity science only really emerged itself in the 1970s. And we’re still learning about the theory today let alone its application.
  17. Every Chief Executive should note the point Stephen Johnson makes about complex systems: they get their smarts from below! Padget and Powell’s book is focused entirely on emergence with respect to organizations and markets, with markets effectively a form of macro organization.
  18. This is Padgett and Powell’s mantra. We’ll come back to this shortly in terms of influence flow.
  19. So in looking to adapt to complexity, in looking to apply emergence to our organizational advantage, we look to nature for clues, for nature is a complex system. Aristotle knew this instinctively. We know it mathematically.
  20. We can even view sociology as emergent itself. It emerges from psychology, which in turn emerges from biology, emerging from chemistry, emerging from physics, emerging from mathematics.
  21. Here’s the last slide on complexity. While we might use the words complicated and complex interchangeably in everyday language, they are in fact quite different. Cars are complicated but complication of itself doesn’t necessarily exhibit emergence. We wouldn’t call traffic flow complicated because it doesn’t consist of interconnected parts, but it sure exhibits complexity. Organizations, however, are complicated AND exhibit complexity. Why have I made this point here? Well many people talk about the power of simplification. We can talk about simplifying complication, but organizational complexity and the complexity of the market are the natural products of many people coming together. It can’t be made simple, only simpler to navigate.
  22. Today then we have an unprecedented appreciation of complexity AND access to information technologies to help us navigate it. That means we increasingly have the facility to kiss goodbye to some of those heuristics that made up for our ignorance in the past.
  23. Look at these 20th Century heuristics. Apparently customers are our number one priority. Oh no wait, shareholders must be. Oh except of course we couldn’t do it without our people. Obviously we can’t have three No. 1 priorities, and in practice of course we know that. So yes, these heuristics make sense up to a point, but now we can regard these stakeholder groups as all being in the complex mix.
  24. We scaled organizations up in the 20th Century, but not our corresponding facility to maintain the qualities of relationships at this scale. Sometimes when asked to define social business I simply say – relationships at scale. We’re not yet very good at this. Isn’t customer relationship management, CRM, supposed to address this for those precious customers at least? A character in my Attenzi story focuses on this question.
  25. I’ll read this one verbatim if I may. … I will just flag up VRM here, vendor relationship management. It’s the name given to the intent to equip customers and citizens with the same capabilities wielded at them today by Big Co and Big Gov., to balance things out a bit.
  26. We saw earlier that our approach to organization must be informed as much, if not more, by the relations than the actors. Esko Kilpi puts it like this: “the basic unit of work is not an individual, but individuals in interaction.” So let’s now look at influence. You have been influenced when you think something you wouldn’t otherwise have thought, or do something you wouldn’t otherwise have done.
  27. At the organization level, we can consider six types of influence flow. This diagram is useful in getting people to think differently about their business. By the way, a stakeholder is any person or organization with an interest or concern in our organisation or something we’re involved in. The Six Influence Flows deliberately avoids the blinkers of 20th Century job titles, disciplines, functions and department names. It gets people thinking about how to we might use information technologies to trace and understand how minds and behaviours are changing – how to influence, and how to be influenced, systematically.
  28. “There’s influence in everything an organization does, and sometimes in what it does not do.”
    “What is the intended outcome of your marketing and PR campaigns, and the design of your organization overall, if it’s not to get stakeholders to think and behave as you’d like, and to be sensitive to how they’d like you to think and behave?”
  29. The idea of information flowing is well established, but it’s the process of changing minds and behaviors that actually matters in our organizational context, fuelled by those flows of data, information and knowledge. Nature doesn’t have a central bureaucracy, and perhaps that’s how it emerged for very good reason.
  30. Harold Jarche labels this focus on empowering the individual, personal knowledge mastery, or PKM for short. He used to call it personal knowledge management but recently moved away from the management word to move away from all the baggage that word comes with, especially as PKM celebrates autonomy as well as mastery and purpose.
  31. It’s at the point of looking back at the organization from the individual’s perspective that we appreciate that the Six Influence Flows is a transitory construct. It works so long as we consider the idea of the organization separately from those stakeholders. To reify it, as in fact most people do most of the time; so this does have value. But even today, the corporate organization is usually considered the sum of its payroll. But it is clearly more than that – always was and always will be. Note for example the relatively recent excitement about collaborating with customers. While the value of this process may have been lost during the industrial age, it is in fact a process as old as trade itself.
  32. Here’s Alex Sandy Pentland on social physics. The history of the phrase harks back to the philosopher and founder of sociology, Auguste Compte. It’s with this heritage in mind that Pentland now uses the term to describe the application of big data and related technologies to analyse and understand human behavior.
  33. Fundamentally, social physics seeks to answer the question: How can we create organizations and governments that are cooperative, productive, and creative? The nature, volume and flux of influence flows, it appears, are all in the mix. We’re now in the domain of working openly and, to quote Bryce Williams, working out loud. If we’re to remove the friction holding back influence flow, then we move from asking ‘who needs to see this?’ to ‘really, does it matter who sees this?’. And that has significant net benefits in terms of trust.
  34. Public relations as we’ve known it, as spin, as publicity, as inauthentic manipulation, is dying. Thankfully. Attempting to build and maintain a façade in the vain hope that customers, employees, investors and partners, present and future, confuse the façade for the real thing is no longer a realistic prospect. And this is very good news for our ambition here to eliminate the compromises in organizational life.
  35. “If perception is reality characterized twentieth-century marketing and PR, reality is perception is the twenty-first century axiom.” Increasing trust eases influence flow, increasing trust.
  36. As Andrew McAfee said in 2007 with respect to Enterprise 2.0, “it’s not not about the technology”!
  37. We often reflect on serendipitous events in relation to business breakthroughs. Might technology change our concept of serendipity? Can tech effectively nurture more of it?
  38. Here’s a rather famous technologist writing in 1999 along similar lines. Gates popularized the phrase “digital nervous system” in framing how IT can help organizations think, act, react and adapt. Thinking of organizations in biological terms is quite natural, as evidenced by the proliferation of biological metaphors throughout management speak – indeed, the word organization has roots back to the word organ. And dropping down from the sociological to the biological is also in keeping with our references to complexity earlier.
  39. 1999 doesn’t feel all that long ago, yet the original expression of the digital nervous system now appears too limited. In the intervening years, with the rapid growth in mobile and big data and analytics and social and the Internet of Things, we can now consider technology’s role more expansively. I can’t imagine many people tuning in here that don’t appreciate the importance of social and mobile for example – but perhaps the Internet of Things in relation to organizational design remains most nascent.
  40. As we instrument the planet, as we make computing ubiquitous and pervasive, the boundary between the technological and the non-technological, the digital and the analogue, blurs. This will be critical in achieving our facility to deal with relationships at scale. Relationships are real-time, visceral, emotional. They occupy space, and they stimulate all senses. I call the manifestation the Internetome and its study Internetomics. The EU COMPOSE project is a case in point – building a “Collaborative Open Market to Place Objects at your Service”.
  41. Thinking in terms of senses is also perfectly suited to reframing business performance management. Performance measurement as stick and carrot may well be associated with traditional command and control hierarchical organization, but they are not synonymous and we won’t throw one out with the other. Performance management as sensory feedback is a critical function of cooperation and collaboration, central to understanding the rights and living up to the responsibilities of autonomy, and part of the very fabric of networks. More on this in a few slides. But for now, what happens when that technological fabric gets smarter?
  42. What happens when the web itself better understands how to deal with the data and information it finds there? When it can identify patterns and trends, prompted and unprompted? This is the domain of Web 3.0, otherwise known as the Semantic Web, and increasingly as the Web of Data. It’s playing out right now.
  43. So might we prove Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel wrong? He didn’t think much of public opinion, and perhaps his most famous pronouncement is: We learn from history that we do not learn from history. Might we however learn from our digital history? We must, in my opinion, in our attempt to eliminate the compromises in organizational life.
  44. No voiceover.
  45. Public relations has a reputation problem, as we learned earlier. However, new theory, values and behaviors are being championed. They may be such a departure that we end up calling practice something else, as former Edelman EMEA CEO Robert Phillips concludes with his polemic, “PR is dead”. We should learn from this work’s emphasis of mutuality. I consider mutuality, and definitions of public relations like my one here, as fundamental to designing social business. In case it’s not obvious, this definition encompasses everyone with a stake in the organization’s success.
  46. This is what I call the social business mutuality stack. Perhaps a key difference between ‘doing’ social and ‘being’ social, between slapping social on versus building it in, is that the former attempts to hone in on monetary value directly. This then requires simplistic ROI calculations social tactic by social tactic, social platform by social platform. It props itself up with Newtonian cause-and-effect thinking, counter to what we know about complexity today. If my book, The Business of Influence, attempts anything, it attempts to rid readers of such blinkered, simplistic and misguided thinking; thinking that fails to realise the full potential value here. True, long-term, sustainable and mutual value is created by working up through the mutuality stack.
  47. When one stakeholder group in an organization takes permanent priority over another, that’s not organization.
    When one always loses a little when another wins a little, all lose a little. Perhaps this sums up my obsession with mutuality.
  48. Mutuality as the foundation of social business helps all those with a stake in an organization’s success recognise the fact, and helps them improve their personal motivation manifest across the four cognitions of meaning, competence, self-determination, and impact. Each individual, and therefore the organization in the collective, will be more eager to learn, to build mutual value via mutual influence founded on mutual understanding. Let’s return to performance in the context of learning.
  49. Business performance management approaches such as the Balanced Scorecard refer to single and double loop learning. But perhaps a third loop isn’t given the airtime it deserves. If we pursue single loop learning and ignore double loop, then we drive up process efficiency but neglect effectiveness. This is at the heart of the matter when, for example, Adam Pisoni talks about prioritizing organizational responsiveness instead of efficiency. Rather, we can reframe Adam’s clarion call as one for responsiveness executed efficiently. Responsiveness is double loop, under which the single loop of efficiency plays its role. If we pursue double loop learning and ignore triple loop, then we pursue effectiveness in the context of the world we live in, but neglect the opportunity to improve that world. You’ll note the question mark bottom right, and perhaps a chap famous for his mastery of single loop learning can help us put a label on this.
  50. Deming spoke of profound knowledge. He also championed the delayering of hierarchy, and systems thinking in relation to org design, and he urged management to create an environment of trust, relationships, interdependence and pride of workmanship. His call for the development of profound knowledge can be interpreted as a call for profound leadership, and by any and all rather than specific individuals with a particular job title or role description. Or, perhaps it’s a collective profound leadership?
  51. Here’s the question the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence seeks to answer. Perhaps we can interpret the reference to intelligence – a loaded word in IT admittedly – as encompassing the facility to address all three learning loops?
  52. You’ll recall the quote from Selznick earlier, from 1996, pointing out that we have failed to address some of the central problems of organization and governance.
  53. Well here Stowe Boyd sums up where we find ourselves today. I love the reference to latent energy. Stowe talks about a 3D workforce – that’s three D’s as in is distributed, decentralized and discontinuous – which makes a lot of sense.
  54. He has taken the opportunity to bring those of us interested in the future of work together in a free and open community called just that – Future Of Work. It’s one of two communities I name-checked up front. All communities benefit from having something to shoot at than stare at a blank page, and Stowe has offered up a draft manifesto for a new way of work, for which you can see the keywords and anti-keywords here.
  55. This table is taken from the manifesto of the other community I mentioned at the start here, called the Responsive Org. As I write, the community has set itself the task of providing practical help to organizations looking to become more responsive.
  56. The founding principles of sociocracy include decision-making by informed consent and organization with a hierarchy of semi-autonomous circles without the power implications of autocratic hierarchy. The electrical engineering firm Endenburg is most famous for employing sociocracy and for the development of the formal method known as Sociocratic Circular Organizing. Interestingly, it’s informed by an approach called cybernetics, itself related to the complexity science we talked about earlier.
  57. Holacracy is named after the idea of holarchy, as opposed to hierarchy. A holarchy is a fractal-like structure demonstrating similarities at all scales. Holacracy has been compared analogously with a software operating system, albeit proprietary rather than open as you’ll note from the trademark symbol here. It’s informed by sociocracy, agile software development, team dynamics and psychology; from theory and practice.
  58. Podularity org design entails pods – small autonomous teams that, like Holacracy, effect a holarchy with fractal-like qualities. In some ways it appears to be Holacracy without the extensive rule book, which may be a saving grace or a failing depending on your perspective. To my mind, Podularity can be traced back to the Toyota Production System from the middle of last century, which later formed the foundation of Lean Manufacturing. In fact one of my first jobs as a young engineer half a lifetime ago championed cellular manufacture, although that cellular ambition didn’t extend beyond the shop floor.
  59. Dave Gray, Podularity’s champion, points out that podular organization requires information to be open and transparent, requires principles, platforms and culture to guide decision-making cohesively, and needs the right kind of people, or the right kind of attitudes at least. Perhaps that Holacracy rule book is there should reality fall short of these requirements. The drawing here is reproduced with permission from Dave’s book The Connected Company. Podularity raises the question – What does a pod size of 1 mean?
  60. Jon Husband champions wirearchy. In Jon’s words, it’s “about the power and effectiveness of people working together through connection and collaboration … taking responsibility individually and collectively rather than relying on traditional hierarchical status.” It’s an emergent organizing principle – referencing complexity science there – informing the transition of org design from command-and-control to what Jon labels champion-and-channel, I quote: “championing ideas and innovation, and channeling time, energy, authority and resources to testing those ideas and the possibilities for innovation carried in those ideas.” Sociocracy and Holacracy are systems. Perhaps Podularity is a model. And Wirearchy is a principle; a provocative and productive principle perhaps, but not something you might effectively ‘roll out’ starting Monday. Which prompts the question, which of these might be the answer, or point us in the right direction? And do they share more similarities than differences?
  61. Lee Bryant puts it succinctly. There is probably no single methodology. To pretend there will be one system is to betray the complexity science and emergence we now appreciate runs through many of the things we as a species are interested in, not least of which the design of organizations, of markets, of society.
  62. If you’d like to join the cooperative endeavour to define the future of organization, particularly with the body corporate in mind, then here are some required links.
  63. We’ve touched on human rights, complexity science, the death of heuristics, influence flows, personal knowledge mastery, social physics, trust, the digital nervous system, Web 3.0, performance and learning, public relations, collective intelligence, sociocracy, Holacracy, podularity and wirearchy. This last section presents some provocations to continue to fuel our cooperative endeavour.
  64. A lot of the conversation about the future of organization focuses on the future of work, on the body corporate. Anne McCrossan reminds us here that the ramifications run much wider and deeper. And if talking about an emergent civilization isn’t third loop I don’t know what is?!
  65. This is my own provocation about social business – a question offered as a definition. It isn’t limited to the body corporate definition of organization. This stack isn’t party political, but perhaps our work here fits with the progressive outlook of the radical centrists. It appeals to free marketers for whom efficiency and utilisation are front of mind – after all why should resources be tied up in one combination when they can add greater value faster deployed in another? And it appeals to those on the left of the political spectrum who champion self-management and occupational autonomy.
  66. Here’s Drucker on autonomy, on managing oneself. In his words: “Only when you operate with a combination of your strengths and self-knowledge can you achieve true and lasting excellence.” Of course, we’re focused on that excellence in the domain of organization. We’re looking to celebrate the individual and the collective in harmony.
  67. Self-organization is a process where some form of global order or coordination arises out of the local interactions between the components of an initially disordered system. So the emergence we spoke about earlier. The Organized Self is when we're equipped with an ‘organization agent’ – software representing us in finding opportunities to create mutual value with others, and helping to realise that value. You’ll note a similarity between the phrase The Quantified Self and The Organized Self. I consider them related.
  68. We have surveillance and nascent sousveillance. But we need socioveillance for heterarchical relationships at scale. You may or may not be familiar with the idea of sociometrics, pioneered by Sandy Pentland and the team at the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence, both referenced earlier, but socioveillance adopts a different perspective, if you’ll forgive the pun. Sociometrics aims to, I quote, “help organizations unlock the potential of their people” and “allows management to align internal metrics as well as resource planning based on key behaviors that drive business.” By contrast, socioveillance is the tool of the individual in forming all variety of organization. Earlier, we looked briefly at Personal Knowledge Mastery as a set of processes, individually constructed, to help each of us make sense of our world and work more effectively. Such process will be aided by Organized Self tools and services such as socioveillance.
  69. My next provocation is inspired by Creative Commons. Copyright law was found by some to be inadequate in coping with and catering to the unprecedented characteristics of the World Wide Web. Rather than attempting to change existing law – which may have taken some considerable time and energy – the Creative Commons community wielded existing law to create new licenses compatible with their aspirations.
  70. In seeking to eliminate the compromises in organizational life we should consider how we might achieve a similar breakthrough with respect to corporate and employment law. I’m specifically thinking about organization within and beyond the traditional company, informed by the light thrown by Ronald Coase on the costs of using the pricing mechanism, better known as transaction costs. The following diagram portrays an architecture to these ends.
  71. It shows the application of a corporate as middleware, a term borrowed from IT meaning a bridge between the operating system and the application layer. This middleware company provides the bridge from today’s corporate, commercial and legal environment to a new organizational ecosystem. The word company has its origins in the Late Latin, companio, meaning "companion, one who eats bread with you”. So I call the middleware company Bread incorporated. Subsidiaries are required as physical location cannot be ignored. Anyone can join the company as companions – a term usefully void of existing legal meaning – defining and declaring their license of participation. Companions coalesce by need and desire, knowledge and capability and shared values, to create shared value – powered by the organization agents of the Organized Self. Companion groups are the closest equivalent in this system to today’s companies and while not strictly necessary in the long-run provide some atavistic comfort, particularly during migration. They may endure if specific groups of individuals decide they can add and derive more value presenting themselves as a band than as individuals. And sometimes people just love sticking together, right? Participation by established corporate entities is essential, and they can do so via the companion API, a proxy for the corporate in this ecosystem. This approach aims to do for organizing what social media has achieved for communications – eliminate friction and encourage heterarchy. So how is this system frictionless?
  72. Being a companion of Bread incorporated allows legal and commercial matters with other companions to be rendered in software. The concept of distributed autonomous corporations or organizations emerged in 2013 with the characteristics listed here, although it has to be said that they have yet to be tested at length beyond the Bitcoin system itself, let alone at the scale demanded here. Bread incorporated is effectively a distributed, self-regulating, incorruptible, frictionless market for organization.
  73. There are many potential advantages to Bread. For example, a digital message can act as a contract – your word is your bond. Payment terms can be whatever the companions decide – 10 minutes without the need to invoice or chase for payment sounds good to me. Create a reputation currency to boot to enable our facility to do relationships at scale, and make all digital collaboration tools read and write structured data via HTTP hyperlinks (which will please Kingsley Idehen among others) and it’s beginning to sound utopian to me.
  74. Brian Robertson over at HolacracyOne has posited that the progression from shareholder value to stakeholder value progresses further to an evolutionary type organization, a “transpersonal” model. In other words an organization existing for its own sake, a new life form – one that’s not “all about people”. I love developing ideas by extrapolation, but some things don’t feel like they sit on the continuum. If this isn’t about people why would people be bothered to create one let alone contribute to its ongoing operations? In The Business of Influence, I noted that “some include the environment and non-human sentient beings as [organizational] stakeholders [but] … for our context … I’ll regard citizens as taking representation by proxy.” Perhaps then such a transpersonal organization obviates the need for such ongoing proxy. Could a transpersonal organization represent the environment and non-human sentient beings directly? Might they then join Bread as companions? Might human companions then voluntarily organize with these transpersonal companions, recognizing environmental costs and demonstrating as much to the wider ecosystem? The transpersonal companions then organize with the resources accrued. By way of example, could emergent carbon trading work better than deliberative carbon trading? Ultimately, Bread is an ecosystem that recognizes complexity, eliminates friction, and appreciates that organization extends beyond the body corporate and indeed beyond the human. It appreciates the difference between the organization as body corporate and organization as co-operative coalescence, employing the former to create the latter. But I think that’s as tangental as we should get here. It’s time to wrap up this section of provocations and this presentation.
  75. Early on I paraphrased Lincoln, and I like this technique so I’ve done it again. Inspired by the analogy of organization-as-software, and indeed the reality of organization-as-software, what might it look like to take a manifesto about software and digital networks and apply it to human networks and organization? To conclude here then, I’ve pasted the majority of the Mozilla manifesto on the next three slides, replacing references to the Internet with references to organization.
  76. Organization is a global public resource that must remain open and accessible. Organization must enrich the lives of individual human beings. Individuals’ security and privacy in organizations are fundamental and must not be treated as optional.
  77. Individuals must have the ability to shape the organization and their own experiences in the organization. The effectiveness of the organization as a public resource depends upon interoperability (protocols, data formats, content), innovation and decentralized participation worldwide. Free and open source software promotes the development of organizations as a public resource.
  78. Transparent community-based processes promote participation, accountability and trust. A balance between commercial profit and public benefit is critical. Magnifying the public benefit aspects of organizations is an important goal, worthy of time, attention and commitment.
  79. Thanks to Lee Jang Sub for giving me permission to use his artistic representation of Rome from his ComplexCity work in the identity for this presentation. And thank you for investing your time and attention.

11 thoughts on “The Future of Organization – a video presentation on the major themes and some new provocations

  1. I think you missed a buzzword Philip (although you got almost every other one known to man).
    Known as the 'g' word in my office: gamification.

    Nice to have met you btw.

    1. Thanks Chris. Coming from a guy with a doctorate in Human and Organizational Learning, that's made my day :-)

      I'm particularly interested in HolacracyOne's regard for the Organized Self and socioveillance, and Bread – somewhat ambitious I realise.

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