Keeping on changing and adjusting is one of the fundamental laws of nature. Most of us don’t want to recognize it, but the pace that we as a society and species are evolving is even faster than nature.
Every system, method or philosophy we created are most of the time based on our past experience and target to resolve current problems. This is the case for the popular and most common methodology to motivate and organize people – Hierarchy*, spiced with ideas from scientific management*. Those ideas worked pretty well for the industrial revolution, but are they still applicable today or for the future?
We evolved a lot since the industrial revolution as humans, and as a society (that invented new technologies embrace them and changed by them). I doubt if Frederick Taylor (the father of scientific management) thought about robots that will interact one with each other and humans, or the possibility of any employee to find an answer to most of the questions by using a search engine. Although we evolved a lot, our thoughts about organizing and motivating people stayed the same.
As a result, we hear all the time about the low level of engagement at work, the dissatisfaction from the workplace and lake of ownership. The gap is even much more significant with new generations that find it hard to be a part of today’s organizations. There are (few) people that understand that we need a fundamental change in organization/management, and there are (many) people that keep on complaining.
Most of the people that are looking for alternative believe that the cause is Hierarchy and scientific management. Although they all have the same conclusion, there are many alternatives to Hierarchy (or current management as most of us know it today). Responsive Org, Network-Centric organizations, Semco Style, Sociocracy, Holacracy, Meritocracy (without hierarchy), Teal-Organizations, and others are all examples of alternative systems. Some of them are ideas, and some of them are practical working solutions.
The tag #NoHierarchy refer to this movement of alternative options to the current way companies organize and motivate people.
*Hierarchy: A system in which members of an organization or society are ranked according to relative status or authority.
*scientific management: Management of a business, industry, or economy, according to principles of efficiency derived from experiments in methods of work and production, especially from time-and-motion studies.