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

Too small to start?

I am planning to adopt holacracy in our team. But we are only four people. Is it too small of a group? Or will holacracy still work?

 

7 Replies
Margaux
03/31/2017

Hi Fajar,

 

We are a 4 people-size company and it works just well. We do lots of work and external people often think we are more than that.

Holacracy will certainly bring a lot of value, making everything explicit.

I would suggest to start with only one circle and a couple of roles, no more. Otherwise, it will be overwhelmed.

Would love to hear your feedback once implemented.

Fajar Firdaus
03/31/2017

That's great to hear. 

we are planning to start next week, and I am looking at the getting started documents http://www.holacracy.org/wp-co...tart_guide_v2.3a.pdf . For initial structure, I am planning to simply use the "traditional role". But I read  on other thread (...ing-up-roles-circles) that some company is running 3 2-hours-sessions, to uncover the work, cluster, and sub-circle. Is it a requirement to do it?

Margaux
03/31/2017

Hi Fajar,

 

It is indeed not easy to implement Holacracy and I would suggest to at least attend a 4.5-day Practitioner Training before getting started.

You can still try it alone and see how it works but it is tough IMO.

Starting with one role per person works, the initial structure is just a draft and it will evolve through governance meetings so that's not a big deal.

Karilen Mays
03/31/2017

Hi Fajar: I agree with everything Margaux says, and want to underscore that it is not easy...though it can be easier to have success on a small team instead of at a larger scale. You can sign up for GlassFrog Premium and use the habit program content to help you in addition to training.

https://glassfrog.com/

I think a team of 3 is the smallest size that is practical so I would be curious to see how it goes with your team of 4.   

Before the first governance, try to keep the preparation simple for the structuring. Craft one role with a purpose or an accountability, and try to time box it to an hour or so. You don't need to spend too much time because you will use the governance process to evolve the roles and add roles over time. Often teams spend more time than is needed trying to design the the perfect structure or over engineer their initial structure.

Alternatively you could also start out as circle members and propose the roles, but it is messier, especially without anyone who has been trained. Try to get some coaching if you can at the beginning. There are some facilitators on the community here who may be looking for practice opportunities.

Also, if you don't have a coach it will be more difficult. Either way, use the meeting reference cards as a guide on how to practice the meeting processes.

Governance: http://www.holacracy.org/governance-meetings

Tactical: http://www.holacracy.org/tactical-meetings

Expect to take six months on average to get the mechanics down, so try to set a reasonable time frame before you decide if it works or not.

Keep us posted on how it is going!

Fajar Firdaus
04/03/2017

Reading your feedback regarding my plan , worries me a little bit. So I think I am going to share this feedback to the team and ask them if they are adventurous enough to try. Which I think we are.

But I think we will consider looking for coach as well. How to do so in this forum? We are in Jakarta Indonesia, so maybe some sort of online coaching is the way to go.

Tom Mulder
04/04/2017
Fajar Firdaus posted:

Reading your feedback regarding my plan , worries me a little bit. So I think I am going to share this feedback to the team and ask them if they are adventurous enough to try. Which I think we are.

But I think we will consider looking for coach as well. How to do so in this forum? We are in Jakarta Indonesia, so maybe some sort of online coaching is the way to go.

[@mention:456308404149183518]

Maybe I can be of any assistance. We can do meeting and coaching via Skype or Zoom. I am located in the Netherlands (but visit Indonesia quite often for diving), so when we set meetings in the morning (Jakarta time) it will work for me.

Please let me know if this can be of help to you and the team. We can then setup a Skype session to discuss in more detail.

Sally McCutchion
04/05/2017

Hi Fajar,

My experience is that Holacracy is a great tool for a team of 4 people but I would agree that getting some external support would be valuable. I am currently supporting a team of 4 here in the UK to implement Holacracy. I'm providing a light level of support as they are essentially self-implementing Holacracy but some guidance along the way has been invaluable for them.

Online support works really well and of course there are plenty of resources (like this forum!) to help you along the way. Don't be put off from beginning this adventure. There is enough collective support globally to help make Holacracy really work for you if you guys are committed to making it happen.

I'm on sally@sallymccutchion.com if you'd like to book in a time to talk,

Sally