Design an “open” organization

One of the challenges that any startup faces is scarcity of resources. It is difficult to work out a roadmap or strategy or plan when you don’t know where to go or if what you are doing will lead somewhere. To solve this, one of the things I want to experiment is to design a truly open organization. It’s an organization that optimizes for innovation and failures. Small failures though.  I would much rather my team to try 100 things and fail 95 of them than not try at all. The key is not “Don’t make mistakes. But keep learning from them.”

TEDx + 明日種子 (dragged) 6

In a startup environment, agility is everything. How do you move from ideas to projects? How do you measure success? How do you define goals so that the team feels accomplished?

Of many questions I am asking myself, which I hope readers can help answer, are:

1. how do I design an organization that learns by/with itself?

  • the closest I have observed is how bees interact with each other and build bee hives. In other words, can an organizational design be like bee-hive? What if school systems are like beehives?

global learning meta archive


2. how do I design the culture where experiments, open sharing are encouraged?

  • how does everyone see themselves more than they are? A project manager can do more than managing projects. A designer can do more than design.

3. how do members learn from each other and build tribes within organizations?

  • One of the companies to emulate is Spotify, the music file sharing company, where it employees squads and tribes as the way to organize work. You can download the attachment here.


These are the questions that I am still grappling with.


About thethirdthinking

Entrepreneur, educator,social venture, storyteller, curator of TEDxTaipei, founder of The Big Question Conference, runner, traveler, design thinker.
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