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Hello everyone. Welcome to the 5 Minutes Podcast. I want with this episode to discuss does Holacracy work with projects? Can I use it? But first let's start explaining what is the term holacracy. Hello Krissy. The best way to explain it's by opposition. Holacracy is the opposite of hierarchy. Legacy is a management style or an organizational structure. If you want to think this way that does not have hierarchy, it's a self organized team. It means, for example, in a project perspective, we are talking about the team without the figure of a project manager, without the figure of someone that approves things. People are independent to work independently and to produce the results. And my question is that does this work in a project environment? Or maybe if we want even to make a broader context, does this work at all? So let's try to explain in different ways. The first thing is that these in an employee perspective, it's like a dream job, right? I would love to work without having to, I would say to report, making my own decisions, making my own conclusions. And this may be great. However, does this work in a large scale? Then it's a big question, right? So the best way for me to answer about this capability of Holacracy to support projects or not, it's to start splitting in two environments. The first one, is it possible? Yes, it's possible.
It will bring a lot of benefits. It brings agility, it brings a true sense of purpose, and it works quite well in small teams, small projects with a quite mature team. For example, if you are on a startup, probably you don't even know. But I'm pretty sure that the organizational model you're using is a holocaust. It means there is no point to have a boss in a work when you are starting a garage with two people. It doesn't make sense, right? It's just self-organized. However, when things start to become bigger, then the whole holacracy becomes more and more challenging because the time and the energy that you need to spend to just set these ground rules and just set these behaviors or these kind of patterns that you are looking for, many times they do not supplant the benefits that you have. This and this is a quite polemic statement. So it's very hard when you have a large project, the large complex project, that holacracy would work just naturally. I cannot just take, for example, a construction project that I'm quite used to do and having maybe 3000 workers. And I say, okay, so I will come back in 18 months and I expect these high rise building to be ready, you know, and then you just organize yourself and think what is the best for the building to be built. It would be very challenge that this will work.
The second is the lack of accountability. For example, who is truly responsible for what? If you set your own accountability, who will have the final corporate accountability? And also to help people to get focused and look, for example, many companies implemented that, and some of them like Zappos, they were very successful at that time, despite some questioning in several articles of that. But some companies, like the medium, the company that where you can share posts and writing notes, they started doing the Holocaust and after a few years they just decided to change the model. And they said that they will continue to using this holographic principle, but they will put some hierarchy because the costs of having to work in cross-functional teams was extremely high for them. So there was a lot of, I would say, islands and people working on their own things without too much collaboration with other groups because people were just accountable by themselves and there is no integration at the end. What it's very important is that if you have a smaller project, a smaller team, this kind of self-organized structure works extremely well. It brings agility, it brings this purpose. And for example, many agile methods work. Extremely well on this. For example, you are developing a software and you have a small team, I would say a dedicated team. Then you don't need to have anyone just leading this group.
However, when things become big, become more complex, you need to have some sort of again, these I'm talking by myself on behalf of myself, you need to have some sort of structure that will support and make some decisions, most of them in cross-functional teams. So this is the key message I want to think with you, because, you know, every time someone comes with a new management term, everybody, it's like, you know, a bright light that attracts everybody and everybody wants to see what is that bright object. But you need to be mindful that not everything that is bright, it's gold. And I'm not saying holacracy is not gold. It can be gold if you use in a nice and right way, but it can bring a lot of chaos to you if you use it in the wrong way, just by the fear of missing out the FOMO. You know, everybody is moving to this way. All these successful companies are moving towards this direction, so I should do the same. You need to understand first what is the type of project you are working with and what is the structure and how you plan to get things done. This is the most important aspect of delivering a project in a successful way. Think about that and see you next week with another 5 Minutes podcast.