The biology of business: 11 rules from complex adaptive systems

I just came across this slide show through a post on the Aid on the edge of chaos blog. Its interesting to see how Sharon Vanderkaay from Farrow Partnership develops the presentation to bring together considerations of complexity and living systems for organizational leaders.

The presentation highlights 11 “enabling rules” for leadership to work in better alignment with dynamic social systems:

  • Pursue agility and resilience (not predictability)
  • Consciously learn from daily experience
  • Allow solutions to emerge
  • Pull don’t push (or, invite don’t force)
  • Seek diversity
  • Rely on vision and boundaries rather than control
  • Appreciate messiness
  • Expect non-linear progress (ups and downs)
  • Cooperate (rather than compete) to create abundance
  • Promote grassroots initiative
  • Create fully human spaces

It would be interesting to hear examples of where people have seen these rules working in practice, and how they may be fine-tuned to work in specific situations.  Equally what barriers commonly stand in the way of embracing these rules?

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