WOW Blog


Shared Governance

January 2022

There are different forms of shared governance that can be applied in organizations, businesses, government, and healthcare. I was trained in one form of flat organizational structure called Sociocracy 25 years ago. I've used it during the last several years in my consulting work and with Wisdom of the Whole. Holocracy is a similar approach that empowers employees and sets up a circle governing system.

What does this having to do with coaching?

These structures are very much aligned with a coaching culture because interactions are based on respect, listening, powerful questions, and direct feedback. They foster individual autonomy, shared decision-making, and open, transparent communication. It's difficult to be a victim in these systems because they facilitate a process of matching authority with responsibility. Individuals are in an adult-to-adult relationship, which highlight the talents, expertise, knowledge and skills of all involved, rather than a traditionally limiting relationship of a parental/hierarchical system.

I have been using these models in my consultations with organizations and was talking with one of my clients in Europe about finding more resources. My client said that Diana Leafe Christian was an expert. I was amazed and delighted to hear this information because Diana lives in my eco-village and her home is 100 feet from my home! If you would like to learn more, you can listen to her 10-minute video here, and visit her website here. There are also more resources to consider here and here.

What is your takeaway on the topic? Are you involved with organizations or groups where this is or could be applied? If you are using it, what difference do you see it making?

All the best,

Linda Bark


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