Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Why Hello Governance?

I wrote a semi-humorous blog entry for the Certified Holacracy Practitioner community discussing the derivation of the phrase Hello Governance from the word Holacracy. In forming this organization, the name Hello Governance called to me from that blog entry. Included below is the original blog text titled: Hello Governance.

Michael Dobbins, December 2, 2008 - 11:19am
I spent last Christmas in Costa Rica, where I had a week immersion in the Spanish language. With that exposure, I noticed a slightly different interpretation of the word Holacracy.

The first part of Holacracy, “Hola”, is the Spanish word for “Hello.” The suffix “-cracy” is derived from the Greek word for “form of government.” We might use this to say that Holacracy means “Hello Governance.” Of course my mind starts to race at this point and I envisioned hordes of little “Hello Kitty” characters running around screaming “Hello Governance” in high squeaky voices promoting branded merchandise like lunch boxes and backpacks (or maybe in our case, coffee cups and briefcases.) Oh, the horror of it all, I come to my senses screaming.

Back to reality. Hello Kitty is a lot of fun for many little kids, and helps them to remember their lunch boxes and back packs as they go to and from school. Holacracy also introduces a more personal relationship with governance to many people not otherwise exposed in our current organizational systems, so "Hello Governance" may be an appropriate interpretation.

Most peoples’ experience with governance is listening to rumours from friends, associates and the media then making a selection in a voting booth every year or so. Even in business, governance is determined at the top and pushed down; where everyone tries to understand the relevance and pretends to follow the directions. For most people, governance is like watching elephants mate: all the action happens in high places, there is a lot of trumpeting, everything below is trampled, and it takes about two years to see any results.

With the distributed, self-organized nature of governance in Holacracy, everyone in the organization has an up-close and personal relationship with governance. There is a vested interested in that process because each person’s view is valued, the results are immediate and the results are very relevant to the specific needs of the people and group.

So in a sense, Holacracy really is a “Hello to Governance” for many people. Now, is there an artist among us who can draw good caricatures of Brian and Tom so we can start merchandizing “Hello Governance.” :) :)