The Dolt’s Guide to Self-Organization<br />Jurgen Appelo<br />jurgen@noop.nl<br />version 2<br />
Goal #1OK, so what is self-organization really?<br />
Goal #2How can we make self-organization work?<br />
Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
We have been taught aboutlinear systems<br />
But then reality confronted us withnon-linear systems<br />
That is like teaching people all aboutfruit flies<br />
Huh?<br />And then lumping everything else together inthe group of… non-fruit flies<br />
Let’s adopt a more realistic approach<br />First, there was a<br />(big) bang!<br />
…and then strings formed particles<br />
…and particles formed molecules<br />
…and molecules formed solar systems<br />
…and living cells<br />
…and cells formed species<br />
…and species formed groups<br />
…and groups formed ecosystems<br />
…and economies<br />
…and every system organized itself.<br />
Self-organization… a definition<br />“Self-organization is a process of attraction and repulsion in which the internal org...
Organization withoutmanagement?<br />
Cool!<br />
but…<br />
Self-organization has a dark side…<br />
Self-organization… the dark side<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/agder/2783124139/<br />
“We humans are obsessedwith purpose. […] The question of purpose, which doesn’t necessarily have to have an answer, is one...
But people care…about value.<br />
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sukanto_debnath/504258852/<br />
http://www.flickr.com/photos/suneko/92395757/<br />
http://www.flickr.com/photos/calliope/104661075/<br />
“Self-organization requires that the system is surrounded by a containing boundary. This condition defines the "self" that...
The containing boundary has a chance to direct self-organizationtowards value<br />
Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
Don’t go here!<br />Go there!<br />Directed self-organization<br />
Governance + leadership<br />Don’t go here!<br />Go there!<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/egadapparel/3212007816/<br />
Managers are like gardeners<br />They let self-organization (anarchy) do useful work<br />while steering the system toward...
Self-organization is the norm<br />
Management is the special case<br />
Three levels ofself-organization<br />Self-organized<br />For example: a software development team<br />Self-selected (= s...
And then there’s<br />Emergence…<br />Supervenience<br />Emergent properties appear at a higher level that didn’t exist in...
Emergent,but not self-organizing<br />
Self-organizing,but not emergent<br />
A development<br />team<br />Emergent +self-organizing<br />
The Darkness Principle<br />“Each element in the system is ignorant of the behavior of the system as a whole [...] If each...
The Law of Requisite Variety<br />“If a system is to be stable the number of states of its control mechanism must be great...
In human terms…<br />A team is too complex to manage by just one person.<br />Only people have the ability to manage compl...
Therefore, management requires…<br />Distributed<br />governance and leadership<br />
Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
Three levels ofmaturity in empowerment<br />Light(low impact)<br />Example: coding guidelines, workshops<br />Moderate (me...
Question:<br />Does handing over power to others make you<br />powerless?<br />
Answer: NO<br />Non-Zero-Sum<br />Zero-Sum<br />Free markets<br />Social networks<br />Teamwork<br />…<br />We all win!<br...
Non-Zero-Sum<br />Powerful teams make their managers more powerful.<br />
Empowerment is an investment<br />Beware of the micromanagement trap<br />(no patience while waiting for ROI)<br />
Manageindividuals(to protect the self-organizing system)<br />
Managetop management(to protect the self-organizing system)<br />
Managethe environment(to protect the self-organizing system)<br />
Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
Trust your people(communicate this clearly)<br />
2)	Earn trust from your people(consistent behavior)<br />
Help people to trust each other(mingle, don’t meddle)<br />
4)	Trust yourself(stay true to your own values)<br />
The four types of trust<br />
Key Decision Areas<br />Make explicit list with“areas of authorization”<br />Prepare project schedules<br />Select key tec...
Key Decision Areas<br />However…<br />Authorization per key decision area is not a “binary” thing<br />Reinertsen, Donald....
Situational Leadership<br />Four different “leadership styles”<br />Telling<br />Selling<br />Participating<br />Delegatio...
Situational Leadership<br />However…<br />It might be good to distinguish between informing people (push your opinion) vs....
RACI Matrix<br />Involvement depends on tasks<br />Responsible<br />Accountable<br />Consulted<br />Informed<br />Make exp...
RACI Matrix<br />However…<br />Key decision areas are better than tasks, and there should be no separation of accountable ...
The Seven Levels of Authority<br />
We will now merge the ideas behind the previous examples...<br />
The Seven Levels of Authority<br />Tell: make decision as the manager<br />Sell: convince people about decision<br />Consu...
Relocate to other office building<br />Replace waterfall with Agile<br />Select tool vendors<br />Agile adoption strategy<...
The optimal level of authority depends on people’s competence and the organizational impactof decisions<br />
Authority Boards<br />
Seven Levels of Authority<br />
Key Decision Areas<br />
teams or people<br />
flow from left to right<br />
Authority boards are<br />controlled by the manager<br />
Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
Self-organization is the norm<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/wobblyturkey/527370752/<br />
Management is the special case<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/tonythemisfit/3495664861/<br />
Management = governance and leadership<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/tonythemisfit/3495664861/<br />
The Seven Levels of Authority<br />Tell: make decision as the manager<br />Sell: convince people about decision<br />Consu...
flow from left to right<br />
The End<br />
slideshare.net/jurgenappelo<br />@jurgenappelo (twitter)<br />noop.nl (blog)<br />jurgenappelo.com (site)<br />management3...
This presentation was inspired by the works of many people, and I cannot possibly list them all. Though I did my very best...
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Jurgen Appelo - The dolt's guide to self-organization @ AgileIL11

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Jurgen Appelo - The dolt's guide to self-organization @ AgileIL11

  1. 1. The Dolt’s Guide to Self-Organization<br />Jurgen Appelo<br />jurgen@noop.nl<br />version 2<br />
  2. 2.
  3. 3. Goal #1OK, so what is self-organization really?<br />
  4. 4. Goal #2How can we make self-organization work?<br />
  5. 5. Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
  6. 6. We have been taught aboutlinear systems<br />
  7. 7. But then reality confronted us withnon-linear systems<br />
  8. 8. That is like teaching people all aboutfruit flies<br />
  9. 9. Huh?<br />And then lumping everything else together inthe group of… non-fruit flies<br />
  10. 10. Let’s adopt a more realistic approach<br />First, there was a<br />(big) bang!<br />
  11. 11. …and then strings formed particles<br />
  12. 12. …and particles formed molecules<br />
  13. 13. …and molecules formed solar systems<br />
  14. 14. …and living cells<br />
  15. 15. …and cells formed species<br />
  16. 16. …and species formed groups<br />
  17. 17. …and groups formed ecosystems<br />
  18. 18. …and economies<br />
  19. 19. …and every system organized itself.<br />
  20. 20. Self-organization… a definition<br />“Self-organization is a process of attraction and repulsion in which the internal organization of a system, normally an open system, increases in complexity without being guided or managed by an outside source.”<br />http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-organization<br />
  21. 21. Organization withoutmanagement?<br />
  22. 22. Cool!<br />
  23. 23. but…<br />
  24. 24. Self-organization has a dark side…<br />
  25. 25.
  26. 26. Self-organization… the dark side<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/agder/2783124139/<br />
  27. 27.
  28. 28.
  29. 29. “We humans are obsessedwith purpose. […] The question of purpose, which doesn’t necessarily have to have an answer, is one that leaps to the front of the human mind, whether it is appropriate or not.”- Richard Dawkins<br />
  30. 30. But people care…about value.<br />
  31. 31.
  32. 32. http://www.flickr.com/photos/sukanto_debnath/504258852/<br />
  33. 33. http://www.flickr.com/photos/suneko/92395757/<br />
  34. 34. http://www.flickr.com/photos/calliope/104661075/<br />
  35. 35. “Self-organization requires that the system is surrounded by a containing boundary. This condition defines the "self" that will be developed during the self-organizing process.”<br />http://amauta-international.com/iaf99/Thread1/conway.html<br />
  36. 36. The containing boundary has a chance to direct self-organizationtowards value<br />
  37. 37. Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
  38. 38. Don’t go here!<br />Go there!<br />Directed self-organization<br />
  39. 39. Governance + leadership<br />Don’t go here!<br />Go there!<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/egadapparel/3212007816/<br />
  40. 40. Managers are like gardeners<br />They let self-organization (anarchy) do useful work<br />while steering the system toward valuable results<br />
  41. 41. Self-organization is the norm<br />
  42. 42. Management is the special case<br />
  43. 43. Three levels ofself-organization<br />Self-organized<br />For example: a software development team<br />Self-selected (= self-designed)<br />Self-organized and system selects its own members<br />For example: founders of a start-up business<br />Self-directed (= self-governed)<br />Self-selected and no direction outside the system<br />For example: criminal organization<br />
  44. 44. And then there’s<br />Emergence…<br />Supervenience<br />Emergent properties appear at a higher level that didn’t exist in the components<br />Not just aggregation<br />Impossible to “build” the systemas an aggregate from the components<br />Downward causality<br />The emergent properties have a real effect on the lower-level components<br />
  45. 45. Emergent,but not self-organizing<br />
  46. 46. Self-organizing,but not emergent<br />
  47. 47. A development<br />team<br />Emergent +self-organizing<br />
  48. 48. The Darkness Principle<br />“Each element in the system is ignorant of the behavior of the system as a whole [...] If each element ‘knew’ what was happening to the system as a whole, all of the complexity would have to be present in that element.”<br />http://iscepublishing.com/ECO/ECO_other/Issue_6_3_10_FM.pdf<br />
  49. 49. The Law of Requisite Variety<br />“If a system is to be stable the number of states of its control mechanism must be greater than or equal to the number of states in the system being controlled.”<br />http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Variety_%28cybernetics%29<br />
  50. 50. In human terms…<br />A team is too complex to manage by just one person.<br />Only people have the ability to manage complexity.<br />
  51. 51. Therefore, management requires…<br />Distributed<br />governance and leadership<br />
  52. 52. Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
  53. 53. Three levels ofmaturity in empowerment<br />Light(low impact)<br />Example: coding guidelines, workshops<br />Moderate (medium impact)<br />Example: self-education, tool selection<br />Advanced(high impact)<br />Example: self-selection, open salaries<br />
  54. 54. Question:<br />Does handing over power to others make you<br />powerless?<br />
  55. 55. Answer: NO<br />Non-Zero-Sum<br />Zero-Sum<br />Free markets<br />Social networks<br />Teamwork<br />…<br />We all win!<br />Football<br />Elections<br />Judiciary<br />…<br />I win and you lose<br />http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zero-sum<br />
  56. 56. Non-Zero-Sum<br />Powerful teams make their managers more powerful.<br />
  57. 57. Empowerment is an investment<br />Beware of the micromanagement trap<br />(no patience while waiting for ROI)<br />
  58. 58. Manageindividuals(to protect the self-organizing system)<br />
  59. 59. Managetop management(to protect the self-organizing system)<br />
  60. 60. Managethe environment(to protect the self-organizing system)<br />
  61. 61. Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
  62. 62. Trust your people(communicate this clearly)<br />
  63. 63. 2) Earn trust from your people(consistent behavior)<br />
  64. 64. Help people to trust each other(mingle, don’t meddle)<br />
  65. 65. 4) Trust yourself(stay true to your own values)<br />
  66. 66. The four types of trust<br />
  67. 67. Key Decision Areas<br />Make explicit list with“areas of authorization”<br />Prepare project schedules<br />Select key technologies<br />Set documentation standards<br />Etc…<br />People should not walk into“invisible electric fences”<br />Reinertsen, Donald. Managing the Design Factory. New York: Free Press, 1997, page 107.<br />
  68. 68. Key Decision Areas<br />However…<br />Authorization per key decision area is not a “binary” thing<br />Reinertsen, Donald. Managing the Design Factory. New York: Free Press, 1997, page 107.<br />
  69. 69. Situational Leadership<br />Four different “leadership styles”<br />Telling<br />Selling<br />Participating<br />Delegation<br />Work your way to level 4<br />http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Situational_leadership_theory<br />
  70. 70. Situational Leadership<br />However…<br />It might be good to distinguish between informing people (push your opinion) vs. consulting them (pull their opinions)<br />
  71. 71. RACI Matrix<br />Involvement depends on tasks<br />Responsible<br />Accountable<br />Consulted<br />Informed<br />Make explicit what people can expect from whom<br />http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Responsibility_assignment_matrix<br />
  72. 72. RACI Matrix<br />However…<br />Key decision areas are better than tasks, and there should be no separation of accountable versus responsible<br />
  73. 73. The Seven Levels of Authority<br />
  74. 74. We will now merge the ideas behind the previous examples...<br />
  75. 75. The Seven Levels of Authority<br />Tell: make decision as the manager<br />Sell: convince people about decision<br />Consult: get input from team before decision<br />Agree: make decision together with team<br />Advise: influence decision made by the team<br />Inquire: ask feedback after decision by team<br />Delegate: no influence, let team work it out<br />
  76. 76. Relocate to other office building<br />Replace waterfall with Agile<br />Select tool vendors<br />Agile adoption strategy<br />Architectural patterns<br />Design and deployments<br />Coding and testing<br />EXAMPLE<br />
  77. 77. The optimal level of authority depends on people’s competence and the organizational impactof decisions<br />
  78. 78.
  79. 79. Authority Boards<br />
  80. 80. Seven Levels of Authority<br />
  81. 81. Key Decision Areas<br />
  82. 82. teams or people<br />
  83. 83. flow from left to right<br />
  84. 84. Authority boards are<br />controlled by the manager<br />
  85. 85. Agenda<br />Self-organization<br />Direction<br />Delegation<br />Communication<br />Conclusion<br />
  86. 86. Self-organization is the norm<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/wobblyturkey/527370752/<br />
  87. 87. Management is the special case<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/tonythemisfit/3495664861/<br />
  88. 88. Management = governance and leadership<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/tonythemisfit/3495664861/<br />
  89. 89. The Seven Levels of Authority<br />Tell: make decision as the manager<br />Sell: convince people about decision<br />Consult: get input from team before decision<br />Agree: make decision together with team<br />Advise: influence decision made by the team<br />Inquire: ask feedback after decision by team<br />Delegate: no influence, let team work it out<br />
  90. 90. flow from left to right<br />
  91. 91. The End<br />
  92. 92. slideshare.net/jurgenappelo<br />@jurgenappelo (twitter)<br />noop.nl (blog)<br />jurgenappelo.com (site)<br />management30.com (book)<br />
  93. 93. This presentation was inspired by the works of many people, and I cannot possibly list them all. Though I did my very best to attribute all authors of texts and images, and to recognize any copyrights, if you think that anything in this presentation should be changed, added or removed, please contact me at jurgen@noop.nl.<br />http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/3.0/<br />

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