Is Holacracy a new organizational structure that will catch on?
In November 2014, Tony Hsieh, the CEO of Zappos, the billion dollar on-line shoe retailer, announced the company was moving to holarchy, an organizational structure with no job titles and no managers.
Instead of the typical hierarchy, fraught with bottlenecks, slow decision making, and concentrated power, the company will be organized into 400 circles, with each circle having a number of roles. The intent is “radical transparency” and extreme adaptability. In this model, the CEO has less power and all employees are expected to lead and to act entrepreneurially. Zappos and its 1500 partners (you and I would call them employees) will be the largest company to date to attempt this type of organizational structure.
Let me explain what I think works with this model, as well as what bothers me about this model.