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Wave Rider by Harrison Owen

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Chapter XIStep 2 Extend an Invitation

Effective self-organization in human systems starts with voluntary self-selection in response to a genuine invitation. This contrasts dramatically with the common practice in which the manager in charge identifies the needed individuals and assigns them to a project. While this makes sense given the traditional understanding of the nature of organizations, it is the direct antithesis of self-organization.

A genuine invitation is one that can be refused. And to whatever extent the invitation is actually a veiled command, space is closed and the likelihood of fully functional self-organization diminished. One might think of the old joke in which the manager says, “I need four volunteers——You, You, You, ...

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