Mariusz Smenżyk


Managing Partner

Holacracy why and where we are

April 21, 2021

Mariusz Smenżyk

Are you Agile? How fast are you able to respond to the changes in VUCA World? Are you an entrepreneur? Have you tried to build a company from scratch? Are you an employee? Were you being strangled by a lack of with lack of purpose?

Is a hierarchical structure the only choice for your company?

Many systems allow us to organise our companies. However, most companies choose a default one: classic hierarchy. Let’s assume that you are CEO. First, you want to hire a mid-management level — the expert who will be managing other people. If you aim for this goal, you won’t have any daily issues to do. Only strategic ones. Really?

Now, let’s assume that you are an employee. You want to know what is your primary responsibility, what boundaries are. What is your role? Does your role involve what you want to do? What if some part of the company underperforms? Are you ready enough to switch yourself to another role? Are you willing to learn something new?

Does the flat structure work for the company?

Bravelab is more than six years on the market. We’ve been growing organically. Between 2015-2021 we increased our revenue by ~51 times. We already have ~30 people on board. We started from - let’s say - a semi-flat structure. Everyone could talk with the CEO; everyone felt equal. That was the theory. Practically every single decision should have been made by the CEO. It slows down a company. We tried to have mid-level management. Still, the CEO was the central decision-making point - and the leading blocker of the company’s growth.

Attempt to develop our culture based on non-default options

Things have changed since I started to learn more about different business models (mainly in Business and IT Management AGH studies). So, we started to be a full-transparent company. You can see rates, commissions, profits, and more as an employee. It was the most crucial step: attempt to develop our culture based on non-default options. We took what was the best from different company structures and systems and applied them at Bravelab.

Testing Holacracy as a new form off structure for companies

Holacracy sample structure form

Six months ago, Lena Pilecka joined Brave. Since that time, we’ve been testing Holacracy. Companies are complex organisms. We gave ourselves a space to experiment. Are we able to manage roles, not people? We still don’t know. But, we know one thing: it develops us and refines our assumptions to enable a self-organized company and allow it to happen.

As a manager/founder/CEO, have you faced similar issues at your company? As an employee, do you see value in it?

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