Companies of the future: No CEO, no boss, managed by blockchain

Great article by Jeremy Epstein on VentureBeat that resonates with how I think. It’s about a Decentralized Autonomous Organization and it has no CEO, CFO, or VPs.

The article touched me in the same way “Permission Marketing” from Seth Godin touched me back in 1999. So it’s something that doesn’t happen often.

It comes at a time where I’m trying to explain to people what the fundamental difference is when it comes to running a cooperative organisation like Herculean compared to a traditional organisation. The article describes exactly what I mean, so I hope many people will read it before they decide to work with us.

It comes at a time where I got in conversation with the founders of Duval Union, another amazing cooperative entity. They shared a great article with us about Network Governance. The article states that Networked Organisations are great to use for “Wicked Problems“. They are great to drive innovation. They are fast and rely on trust.

These things come at a time where we are building teams of licence-holders all over the world. A time where we need to define our “way of working” to hundreds of people from partners to crew to suppliers.

I actually believe that our governance structure is what makes us so special. Of course we are great in organising Hercules Trophy, Academies en Projects. Of course we have amazing technology to drive our growth. But I believe the most important part is our DNA. It’s the people who work together and create amazing experiences without a strict hierarchical model to govern them. It’s a DNA, a set of values that defines whether you are a Herculean or not. Because of that DNA, the non-Herculeans eventually leave the organisation and new Herculeans join. Just to be very clear: it’s not because you don’t have our DNA, that you are a “bad” person! We are just not the right company for you.

You can read the complete article here. Underneath are some interesting extracts:

In fact, there’s no hierarchy at all. Of course, any time you bring people together in a group, there are bound to be politics, but it won’t be the “command and control” structure that most of us are used to.

What a DAO is

A DAO is a combination of computer code, a blockchain, smart contracts, and people. (Well, people, for now, at least, but that’s a topic for a different post.)

The founders of a DAO set up the basic governance rules of how it will work. For one example, see how Fermat explains it here.

The DAO has stakeholders who own tokens that represent a share in the performance of the DAO. Essentially, what those stakeholders want is an increase in the value of their tokens as reflected by increased demand.

The bottom line is that, in a DAO, instead of being hired as an employee, you are awarded a contract on a project basis. The Fermat project, for example, calls these ‘Contribution Contracts.”  Then, after discussion among the community members, the proposal is voted upon and, when passed, work can commence.

So, the incentive for everyone who contributes to a DAO is

  1. Get your stuff done
  2. Get it done with high quality
  3. Treat people with respect

After all, if you don’t do these things, your livelihood is threatened.

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