Holacracy Community of Practice Archive, 2015-2019 Community Holacracy Web Site

Reply to Shadow Power - Resources

By Keith Jarvis Topic posted 03/30/2018

Great topic. Thanks for posting about it [@mention:454478741268114544]

For [@mention:455886150941203371] , I would confirm that publishing something that simply defines what a "shadow power structure" is would be very helpful. The topic has come up in our holacracy, and what I thought was an intuitively obvious term--shadow power structure--gets a lot of blank stares.

We had an initiative recently to discover and define what our company culture is. In a face to face survey we asked (among other things), "Name some behaviors that get punished...". One of the top responses was basically "crossing the shadow power structure". People said things like, "Taking authorized action that crosses perceived power-holder desires" and "Disagreeing with former power holders". I have personally spoken with people that are making decisions that they correctly believe are within their authority in Holacracy, yet they feel pressure from a former power holder to make a different decision.

We're in the early stages of figuring out how best to address this, so I'm definitely interested in ideas others have.

Thanks for the links [@mention:499799321313210508].  Definitely going to read those.