Social Density: The key to self-organization

Command-and-control (a.k.a. management the social technology) is "socially loose". Here, pressure is performed from the top-down. Control works just the same way. It is, quite simply, the top of the organization, that is always in charge in this way of operating. Variations of the command-and-control theme include "delegation", "participation", or temporarily tolerating "islands of happiness" within the organization, on which slightly different rules may apply, as long as they do not destabilize the whole. As command-and-control has been the standard way of operating organizations for what appears to be forever: We all know precisely how command-and-control works. The problem is a different one, however: Too many of us have since long accepted the notion that other, more effective forms of organization based on self-organization principles (a.k.a. real leadership) are "less likely" to happen, "more difficult", "more chaotic/risky" and/or "less efficient". It is this continuing disbelief in self-organization that the trouble starts with: By accepting notions such as the above, our thinking turns into the biggest barrier to the Necessary Organizational Renaissance.

By Niels Pflaeging