“These organizations manage to operate at very large scales — some have thousands or tens of thousands of employees — entirely without the pyramid, entirely without anyone being the boss of anyone else. And I know that sounds extraordinary — it sounds like a recipe for chaos. I mean, how could you run a large organization without hierarchy? It doesn’t make any sense. I wasn’t expecting this when I started the research. [But] what I found out the truth is: yes, you need structure, but no, you don’t need a boss. This is really a place where we need to upgrade our thinking.”
Archive for January, 2016
“An over-focus on resource efficiency [leads to chain reactions of superfluous work that does not add value]. The efficiency paradox is that [by focusing on] utilizing our resources efficiently, we are actually being inefficient since much of that utilization comes from superfluous work. […] Paradoxically, not focusing on utilizing resources makes it possible to free up resources.”
“The efficiency paradox exists at an individual level [and] on an organizational level. What if it also exists at the societal level? […] How many resources could we avoid wasting if we started to see the ‘big picture’ and focus on flow efficiency?”
-Niklas Modig and Pär Ahlström, This is Lean (p.58-65)
See also: the paradox of customer focus.
Paraphrased from Quiet, p. 218.
- What did you love to do as a child? (Focus on the underlying impulses.)
- What optional work or side projects have you gravitated to? (Work you chose even if it was outside your comfort zone.)
- Who do you envy? (Jealousy doesn’t lie.)