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Twenty-Something Theses of Autonomy

I believe in a radically different organization than what exists in the world today. In order to build the new economy (and thus a new world) our ideas of how an organization works must be challenged (“You can’t make an omelete [sic] without nuking the existing social order“). A keystone of this “new way” is Autonomy. In order to get the best results, Freedom is essential. I have begun the process of capturing my theory in my “Twenty-Something Theses of Autonomy.” This list will evolve as I expand on each of these Theses, however, I want to begin the improvement process now by starting a discussion.

Do you see anything obvious missing? What has your experience taught you? Let’s talk.

Twenty-Something Theses of Autonomy

  • Customer Delight Cannot Exceed Worker Delight
  • Fully Engaged + Fully Present = Fully Human
  • Humans Own Outcomes
  • Creativity Seeks Free Spirits
  • Nonlinear Innovation Needs Creativity
  • Innovation Breeds Failure Breeds Innovation
  • Community Improves Results (and Expedites Failure)
  • Fear is the Org Killer
  • Telling Triples Turnover
  • Demanding Delivers Dummies
  • Teams Solve Difficult Problems
  • Autonomy Trumps Hegemony
  • Ivory Towers Are For Wizards (and Look Where That Got Saruman)
  • Only Gamblers Pick Winners
  • Diversity Wins
  • The Best Ideas are at the Market
  • Heterogenous Systems Increase Effectiveness (over time)
  • Simple is Better
  • Maximize Laziness
  • Effort is Expensive
  • Results > Effort
  • Only Results Matter
  • Adults Come to Work
  • Team = Product
  • (Team + Product)^n = Organization
  • Leaders Don’t Manage
  • Results Cover a Multitude of Sins
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Comments

  1. Autonomy is an interesting axis to use, and I think it’s a good cornerstone but would encourage you to think of what the other axes might be. For example Relatedness/Community might be another one to consider. If you’re not already familiar with the SCARF model about how the brain works, you may find that it provides a framework for thinking about how humans organize and collaborate, and how you can build a collaboration network around that.

    The ones I’m most interested in hearing about are, and/or agree with the most:
    - Innovation Breeds Failure Breeds Innovation
    - Fully Engaged + Fully Present = Fully Human
    - Maximize Laziness

    The ones I’m most concerned about and/or would be most likely to disagree with:
    - Humans Own Outcomes
    - Results Cover a Multitude of Sins
    - Only Results Matter

    Cheers,
    Raoul

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