Fractal Organizations: Adaptive Cultures


Living systems in nature and the species that inhabit them evolve by adapting to changing conditions and sharing resources for the sustenance of all.

In contrast, many human organizations have evolved with a belief in scarcity and the related impulse for internal competition, both of which diminish creativity, create stress, and reduce an organization’s ability to evolve, innovate, and compete effectively in the marketplace. Collaboration amplifies creativity and reduces stress, which improves the health of an organization and the individuals within it.

Fractal organization structures are not suitable for every organization. Many managers relish control and believe they effectively wield it. Leaders who have tired of trying to control the outcomes in their organizations and the behavior of their staff members, however, are ready for this new approach to collective endeavors and the stress-free life that it brings.

Adaptive cultures exhibit respect for individual perspectives, openness to new ideas and functional-level decision making, and honesty in communication. These characteristics allow greater personal and collective expression, reduce fear, and empower participants to find creative solutions.

Communication is a key piece of the puzzle and the foundation for creating and sustaining a culture of mutual appreciation that maximizes collective brain power in ways that benefit both human stakeholders and our natural planetary systems.

  • Shared purpose and values create space for a diversity of opinions and contrasting viewpoints that lead to best outcomes.
  • Organizational alignment amplifies creativity, builds loyalty, improves health, and reduces unwanted turnover.
  • A sense of feeling valued and belonging to a group effort enables rapid and reliable team and individual decision making.

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