Holacracy, liberating a Business from chains at all levels to go "Up, Up, Up"!



What do you need?

In which role are you speaking?

What is your tension?

Three questions one needs to ask oneself, it’s that simple...


In Holacracy, we have the freedom to make a difference, to change the way a role works and express you need. You have complete authority on your role to do whatever it takes to get the job done well and no one can tell you otherwise nor has the right to do it in your place because it is your space, your role, you know it best therefore it is now your sole responsibility to energize and improve it.

Something many desire professionally but do not necessarily have the opportunity to express oneself in a classic managerial system.

At bulk and Co we have the privilege to work with Holacracy right from the start unlike many businesses who choose to break free from classic pyramid organisation towards Holacracy which is based on circles and links in a way, creating a ripple effect in a very positive manner.

We’ve defined our purpose within our circle and each one of us devoted to having the business develop for this purpose and are now working on roles the embodiment of as well as eliminating useless ones. But the most difficult one we have is the ability express tensions to be able to take action and if necessary bring to the organisational level so right now, the design is still in it’s very early stages.

I’ve come to realise that even in a new business and a “clean slate” with this new concept, there is an unconscious duality some are faced with between “wanting” and “being” as many carry none the less, old habits essential to break free from. Changing habits and having all this space in a designated role to take decisions is very new and de-routing because walls and limits fall down, some are used to following rather than leading or listening and executing rather than thinking and finding the solution to a problem for it to never arise again… All which in turn all slow down the development of a business’ activity as well as the energy an individual wants to put into it.
Becoming an actor and not an observer is a powerful shift and when setting up Holacracy in the company one actually realises with those three questions that one must ask oneself, a major percentage of the obstacles preventing from having one’s work move forward is in fact oneself.

Each and everyone needs to find their voice for their role, pulling each individual to become responsible, independent, and mature in that role.  Separating the person from a title to occupy a role, understanding that if there is an issue that needs to be dealt with, it’s about the role and not the person. This in turn automatically eliminates all emotional external interferences to treat the issue and only that. Time is needed to adapt to this new architecture to also differentiate “the fear of” from a “concrete tension”. Tactical meetings and Governance meetings are very well set up to be dynamic and straight forward for this. Occupying a cross link role, I’ve seen in a circle transitioning to Holacracy in a two-hour meeting have 17 very old, heavy tensions dating years back treated with actions to deal with them in the present and also processed to set what is necessary in place for it to never come up again. On top of that, numerous issues erased simply because it had nothing to do with the role or the business and the persons actually realising that their energy was wasted on something personal that just needed to be let go of in the work space. With a facilitator animating the meeting and a set of rules to play with, the team is aligned with the topics addressed, and there is only space to move forward.

I’m convinced we’re on the right track but it would be a lie for me to say that it’s easy, because being responsible for one’s actions demands facing the issue at hand and proposing a solution, while stopping those who are naturally problem solvers to stop solving everyone else’s problems if it’s not their place to do so. Talking about an issue/tension is not easy either, Holacracy obliges a person to break free from accepting to just living with the situation and complaining about it, blaming others. Some are actually comfortable in that mind set hoping a hero will come in to save the day when in actual fact they have the capacity to become their own hero. There is also a lot of work for everyone to embrace change and develop the skills to adapt not stagnate, most importantly to cease the attitude of keeping things the way they are because that’s the way it has always been.

Holacracy, has given Bulk and Co the tools to get everyone to think forward and improve the business’ activity. Hidden talents have sprouted from implementing Holacracy and is a pleasure to see. So we will keep improving on doing what what we do well in coherence with our purpose, to do it even better. It will be a long road, there are ups and downs but we are all motivated and tell ourselves if we fall, get up and keep moving for success comes by taking it one step at a time.
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Tammy Boulanger's picture
Tammy Boulanger
From Bulk and Co
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