What is Holacracy and Why ArctiqOS?
Spring 2019, marks 2 months since I joined Arctiq to energize a number of different roles. My primary accountability is implementing Holacracy and deploying a new organizational operating system - what we call ArctiqOS. In this blog series I will share the ArctiqOS story - our journey of becoming a holacratic company. In Part 1 of the series, I will explain the concept of Holacracy and the reasons Arctiq chose to adopt Holacracy as our organizational and management framework.
Getting Started with ArctiqOS:
From Arctiq’s launch in April of 2016 to early 2018 the team grew from 5 people to 12. During this organic growth period it was becoming clear that Arctiq’s focus on technical expertise and delivery was working, but at some point, the team was going to need to think about structure. It was becoming evident that a more concrete organizational structure needed to be established. Everything Arctiq does is about change; it is about re-thinking efficiency and agility. Ultimately, that led to the investigation of alternative operational strategies, deviating from the typical approach of hiring managers in order to scale. Holacracy seemed to fit much of what the team was looking for in structure and flexibility.
What is Holacracy?
Holacracy is a framework for structuring and managing organizations in a non-traditional way. Traditionally, we are used-to the top-down organizational structure (manager-subordinate or command-control), which is known for endless and often inefficient meetings. Typical organizational management structures tend to fail in adopting innovative ideas and promoting team talent, due to managers being overwhelmed and too slow to respond. On the contrary, Holacracy focuses on distributed authority with no management - essentially you are your own boss, where team members are empowered to self manage. This is not to say there is no structure in place. Team members are still accountable without having a traditional manager present. Structure is achieved by having a set of rules, that are spelled out in the Holacracy Constitution.
By choosing to practice Holacracy, the first thing to do is to adopt the Constitution. The purpose of the Holacracy Constitution is to govern the organization and the roles that people energize. By adopting the constitution, there happens to be a shift in power from one person (CEO) to the entire organization (framed by roles rather than titles). In the end, the people who hold roles, have accountabilities to the company, and also carry the authority to execute their tasks - meaning they can make their own decisions! All within a governance framework everyone can follow. Simple, right?
Interested to learn more about Holacracy?
Here are a few resources to get you started:
- Holacracy: The New Management System for a Rapidly Changing World. Book by Brian Robertson, co-founder of Holacracy - a comprehensive story of what Holacracy is and how to get started
- Ted Talk - Holacracy: A Radical New Approach to Management - a quicker way to get familiar with the concepts
- HolacracyOne - official company spearheading Holacracy worldwide
ArctiqOS Install and Updates Pending!
Having shared with you the main concepts around Holacracy, I invite you on a journey into the ArctiqOS installation process. Over the next few months, I will continue this blog series, publishing new updates on the installation and how ArctiqOS is running. Stay tuned for more information on topics such as:
- Installing and upgrading Arctiq OS: Successes and Challenges
- How to get the most out of your meetings (seriously!)
- Changing an organization’s mindset: Freedom and Self-realization
Have questions? Please feel free to comment below or contact me directly: [email protected]
Interested to learn more about Arctiq or have a technical discussion? We would love to hear from you!