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18 Experiments in Post-Bureaucratic Leadership

by Polly LaBarre on July 30, 2013


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18 Experiments in Post-Bureaucratic Leadership

Remember that classic New Yorker cartoon with Rover sitting in front of a computer? The caption read, “On the Internet, no one knows you’re a dog.”  Well, on the web, no one knows you’re a senior vice president either. That’s why every leader is going to have to learn how to get things done in a world where authority is the reciprocal of followership.

As traditional hierarchies get supplanted by networked, or “social,” organizations, leadership will become less a function of “where you sit,” than of “what you can do.” Any company that strives to build a leadership advantage will need more than a celebrity CEO and a corporate university that serves up tasty educational morsels to the “high potentials.” It will need an organizational model that gives everyone the chance to lead if they’re capable; and a talent development model that helps everyone to become capable.

What does it take to dramatically enlarge the leadership capacity of an organization—and equip all of its people to lead without formal authority? Those are the questions behind the Leaders Everywhere Challenge, the second leg of the Harvard Business Review/McKinsey M-Prize for Management Innovation. And today we’re proud to announce the eighteen finalists—a robust collection of real-world case studies and courageous experiments in rethinking the work of leadership, redistributing power, and unleashing 21st century leadership skills. Here they are in alphabetical order:

Biggest-ever day of collective action to improve healthcare that started with a tweet
Story by Helen Bevan, Damian Roland, Jackie Lynton, Pollyanna Jones
Teaming at GE Aviation
Story by Rasheedah Jones
The System of Leadership
Hack by Monique Jordan
Don't remove their igloos!
Story by Peter King, Juanita Cardoza, and Carlos Largacha-Martinez
Rap a Tap , Tap Tap , Join TITAN and you are the leader
Story by Lalgudi Ramanathan Natarajan and Sumant Sood
What goes into building a CEO Factory?
Story by Stephen Remedios
Who do people report to here?
Story by Richard Sheridan
Quit Email and Start Leading
Hack by Kim Spinder



Please explore the finalist stories and hacks and add your comments and ratings—they’ll make a difference as finalists update and build on their entries for final judging. We’ll announce the winners of the Leaders Everywhere Challenge here the week of August 26th.


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