Holacracy, what is it and what is it used for?

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Holacracy, what is it and what is it used for?

At Biking Buenos Aires, we´ve adopted Holacracy as our manageent framework. This means that we´ve committed ourselves to follow a set of rules in order to decentralize authority, and provide clarity on who does what, who can decide what, and what is expected of each role.

 

The main reasons we were motivated to try a new way of managing our company were:

  • To avoid putting ourselves in the position of a CHILD:  We noticed that in traditional management, employees end up taking the place of a child, while the Organization takes the place of a PARENT. The parent is supposed to care for the child, and provide everything that the child needs, but in turn the Parent makes decisions for the child, and basically tells the child what to do and how to do it. We believe that this is not beneficial for the members of an organization in the long-term.
  • To motivate every single collaborator within Biking. Our hypothesis was that if the organization gives the freedom to make decisions, and trusts in it´s collaborator´s problem-solving skills, these collaborations would feel energized and motivated to lead the organization´s evolution.
  • To scale organically: Have you heard of holarchies? Holarchies are organizational systems that nature uses in order to scale complex organisms. Holarchies are organized by conforming autonomous organisms from smaller autonomous organisms. An example is the human body: Our cells function independently and make up organs, which  function independently, and collectively make up a bigger, more complex organism.

So, in short, we wanted to keep a notion of Biking Buenos Aires as a group of energized adults, who self-organize their work and distribute authority to pursue mature decision-making.

 

Implementing Holacracy

At first, it was all laughs and jokes. We were full of enthusiasm, and were basically playing a game.

But then… things began to get real. Some of us were having trouble taking ownership of our roles; others didn’t want to have extra authority without having extra payment. Also, these new terms, meetings, and rules had to be assimilated and studied.

Our first year using Holacracy was basically an exercise to unlearn patterns, while trying to leave the drama triangle behind.

But let’s be honest, transitioning to a scheme where employees turn into CEOs of their roles is not easy. We found sooo many technical and personal challenges on the way, so having an expert in this framework was key!

Enter ENCODE.
Encode is a world-wide organization that promotes POWERSHIFT: Having purpose as the boss. They were our partners in this transition towards a purpose-centered new horizon, and the new methodologies used to achieve it, like Holacracy. We appreciate having had their support throughout this whole transition, and suggest anybody who is planning on implementing Holacracy.

 

Today

Today, we are happily relying on Holacracy to make decisions. This framework has given us the opportunity to use our best judgement, learn new skills and strengthen our leadership skills.

Here we are, we are the first for-purpose enterprise in latin america, we are a team composed of mainly partners who confidently make decisions, and we have a set of rules to make these decisions without compromising the sustainability of the organization.

We are a group of energized adults who self-organize their work in order to achieve a common purpose.

This is Biking Buenos Aires

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