The No-Managers Organizational Approach Doesn’t Work

Source: Brandon Rigoni and Bailey Nelson, Gallup, Business Journal, February 5, 2016

…. A no-manager approach, holacracy is characterized by a fluid organizational structure in which teams are self-organized and individuals have high autonomy and authority to make decisions at a local level. …. Zappos isn’t the first company to struggle after eliminating the manager. As Laszlo Bock, Google’s head of people operations, describes in his book Work Rules!, Google similarly tried relieving all managers of their management responsibilities. The experiment was short-lived because of people issues and problems that the company could not handle effectively without managers. Google reinstated the manager role within six weeks. Google’s research also showed that workers with the best managers performed better and had lower turnover. Even for these two innovative, successful companies, it seems that cutting managers causes serious problems for employees. Here are two powerful findings about basic human needs that may shed light on the problems that Zappos and Google encountered in eliminating managers.

Engagement Is Lowest When Employees Feel Ignored ….
Clear Expectations Are a Basic Human Need ….