I found myself reflecting on the plane to Las Vegas about some of the key aspects of the Socially Dynamic Organisation: it will be reconfigurable, hold a diversified strength, strongly tribal, and highly authentic.
When an organisation is reconfigurable, it holds it’s strength in it’s fluidity: a fluid hierarchy that is diagonally connected. This means it’s more interconnected, stories flow between levels more easily, not simply dictated down the chain, but flowing upwards as well. Diagonal storytelling abounds, with active story listening a common feature: all of this is hard to achieve, as it requires formal leaders to re-examine their relationship with established power.
When we hold diversified strength, an organisation is permeable to expertise, both in terms of accessing community held knowledge, and contributing knowledge into those communities. It is impermanently bonded: the structures of power, that act as forces of control within, are flexible. More fluid functional structures, shaped more around purpose than utility. A Socially Dynamic Organisation will be restless, not counting the strength that it has, but always consider the strength it needs to earn.
All organisations have strong tribes, but often held invisibly: to be Socially Dynamic, we support and enable people to build strong Social Capital, to seek out, find, join, or dismantle, these tribal communities. Our strength can be measured in the cross connectivity between these, crossing through first and second degrees of trust, and beyond.
Most of all, authenticity will be valued as a genuine type of power: hard earned, nurtured, and available to anyone through Social Leadership. Reputation based power, granted by the community. This is the nature of the Socially Dynamic Organisation: it’s held together with fairness, respect, pride, and trust. Not bonded by power and control alone. It’s a new form of power for a new time, the Social Age.
Technology will not grant us this organisation, and neither will any formal leader: we have to build it, together. As formal leaders, we can set a direction, and we can hold open a space for change.