31 Ekim 2023 Salı

The Notes from “Freedom Inc.”

Dear Readers,

I want to share notes from the book called “Freedom Inc.” in which the importance of the freedom of the employees were mentioned. 

The legendary CEO of 3M says, if you put fences around your people, you get sheep. Give the people the room they need. 

People respond to the environment in which they find themselves. 

Taylorism has turned the employees into the automatons and this was appreciated for a long amount of time. 

The successful companies researched, have two things in common:

- They tie their success together with their culture of freedom. 

- They are rare because of the bureaucracy applied. It is like obesity. To gain weight is much more easy than lose it.

The lessons from the liberated companies are:

- Stop telling and start listening from your people.

- Start openly and actively sharing your vision of the company so that your people will own it. 

- Stop trying to motivate your people, let them to motivate themselves. 

- Stay alert about protecting your company. 

The job descriptions freeze the people. 

There are four principles of a good company. 

1- Freedom

2- Fairness

3- Commitment 

4- Waterline

Commitment verses job. A job is something a boss gives you. A commitment is something which is freely entered into. A promise of the individual. Something chosen verses something imposed. 

There are how companies and why companies. In how companies, the managers spend their time to describe the work to be done. How to accomplish a task, when to come, when to leave…

In why companies, the people ask why they are doing that particular task. The answer is always the same. To make the customer happy. 

Management for 3% is the main strategy for the how companies. They put rules and controls in order to keep the unmanaged / disengaged employees. To keep them on track, if the rule is violated more rules are applied to manage those people. But this eventually causes the rest (97%) to be disengaged. 

According to a survey, 27% of the employees were engaged where the 59% were disengaged and 14% were actively disengaged. As an allegory, this means that if 10 people are sailing in a boat, 3 people are rowing to the right direction, 6 people just splashing some water and the rest 1 is rowing on the opposite side.

Many good ideas die in the command control hierarchy. 

Culture eats strategy at the breakfast. You can have the best plan but if your culture doesn’t allow it, there is no chance of it. 

In the how companies, there is big stress on the workers. It is researched that 40% of the worker disability is caused by stress. This also leads to a productivity problem. Eventually the employee has either fight or flee choice. But they start to use alcohol or drugs to overcome the problem.

When a person believes she has a high degree control on the event, she judges it as less stressful. Giving people control over their work; the hidden costs, absenteeism will also go down. 

“How” approached emerged during the Industrial revolution because of two reasons:

- The illiterate work force and

- The artisans were so reluctant to work more which caused underproduction.

There is a banana experiment conducted on the monkeys. In summary the banana is hung on the top and if any monkey wants to grab it, gets cold shower. After a while any monkey tries to grab it punished by the others. This discourage all monkeys to grab it. This shows that a negative culture is not necessarily imposed by the top guy, but also spread by the peers. 

Freedom is neither hierarchy nor an anarchy. The best way of defining it, is the ordered liberty.

People start emotionally owning the company’s vision only when they are free to make their own decisions in pursuing it. A leader can’t force people to emotionally own the company’s vision, he can only seek to create the conditions in which they are convinced of it themselves.

It is crucial for a would be liberator to completely refrain from telling because everybody watches to see whether he will “walk to talk” is it were.

Meaning of the organisation charts will build on the assumption that the person is bad. This recalls the theory of McGregor in which he has stated the X and Y theory. In X theory, you dont depend on the people but in Y you believe in them. 

A CEO’s main task is to protect the culture. Dual standards are the cancer of cultures.

In a liberated company more people have more authority to make their own decisions on behalf of the business. 

The weak signal is the sort of information that is important but doesn’t rise to the attention of management because it never gets passed up the line or get lost in the noise of larger problems with stronger signals.

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