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

Reboot from Scracth


Has anyone considered restarting his Holacracy implementation from scratch ?

My tension behind : I think we have missed many things from the beginning in our practise.

Since one of our colleague's return from a "Practician" Training Course (with the first Holacracy Provider  ) in Paris, we've learned many things that we can't fix afterward (it will be too long and we have to make a big gouv. meeting to handle that)

So, the idea came from that : Let's build a new Super-Circle. The existing super-circle is the actual gourvnance until we swtitch to the new one. 
The new Super-circle will be built without our previous mistakes. 

Do you have some feedback on this ? 


8 Replies

Hi Imrane,

I haven't experienced such reboot. But reading your proposal, I can imagine some pathways to do it properly (this Super Cicle and unique Circle, like a "Big bang") :

1. you have a governance meeting of your anchor circle in which some member propose to remove all sub circles, bringing back all the embedded roles in the anchor Super Cicle (and if needed, you can transform some sub circle in simple roles, if some of their accountabilities for example were not distributed to the roles within) ; it may just be 1 proposal for all that.

2. or a have a governance meeting of the anchor circle in which you propose to remove all the existing roles and subcircles, and come with the set of new roles you've crafted before, or you craft them in live. It also may just be 1 proposal for this whole transformation.

3. The Ratifiers of the constitution decide to remove the constitution. Your back to the former organization system. And the one who has the authority for that decide to ratify again and design by himself a new initial structure. 

I see the 3rd possibility sounds a bit weird for me (like a General suspending a Republic, changing the organization of the country, and giving back the power to the Republic). I would prefer the 1. or the 2. But I read that you're afraid that would be too long. In my mind, you can have a very complete "Big Bang" proposal before, that you directly present in the meeting (if you're member of the anchor circle). Then, you only have 1 agenda item to deal with. If that take 30 min or 2 hours, maybe it's reasaonable for such an important decision. But that just my opinion

Jeff Kreh

[@mention:523303475152557001], interesting tension! So, if I understand correctly, the implementation failed in certain ways and you'd like to start fresh. How might the Constitution's existing provision for a breakdown of process work to address the failures? 

Rick Kahler

This is a timely discussion for me.  My company has a similar situation where we've discovered we implemented Holacracy with some major flaws and yesterday 2/3rds of the partners voiced a desire to return to a hierarchical system because  fixing Holacracy is being viewed as overwhelming and not worth the effort to fix. We adopted the constitution over four years ago, so this is disappointing to me.


I don't want us to go back to hierarchy. But we have to explain to everyone what Self-management, wholeness and evolutionnary purpose are. People will understand then that our current gouvernance is represiting our former hierarchical organization and that's why we haven't took advantage of what holacracy has to offer. 

Transitionning seems more important to practising...

Tom Mulder

Guess you described the solution yourself. Explain people the correct rules, practice the correct rules and tensions will arise on current Governance. These tensions can then be handled during Governance meeting.

What also might help is to invite a Coach after, say a period of 3 months, to do an audit on the Governance records. This will help and you and the organisation better understand the do's and dont's.

Lots of wisdom on this challenging journey and remember. Always trust the process :-). 



Thanks, for your answers, all of you.

Indeed, I guess we have to take time to have everyone on the boat again.

I'll let you know, in the next few weeks how are we doing.

Anne Maigatter

Hi all, thank you for your interesting posts and thanks for sharing your experiences. In our study about Holacracy we also want to put insights into the pitfalls - so @Imrane and all others: Is it possible to include you in our study? We want to start in fall '17. However, the study only starts if the crowdfunding for it is successfull (https://www.startnext.com/en/holacracy). So, if you want this study to be real and want to share your knowledge and solutions and make it possible for others to learn from your experiences, I am happy to count on your support. Of cours,e you can contact me through pn or anne.maigatter@fhnw.ch.



I saw this on twitter. 

I don't have the authority to say "yes" for now. But feel free to contact us when you are ready.