As technologies advance and an increasing number of millennials dominate the workplace, we are seeing an exponential growth of businesses moving away from traditional company structures. Many new companies are gravitating towards innovative work environments that foster flexibility, trust, and transparency. ConsenSys is a blockchain certification venture production studio with global efforts in economic, social, and political sectors. The company has implemented a non-traditional business structure, a decentralized organizational system which places a high level of trust for its employees to manage themselves.
In a decentralized organization, there is no hierarchical management team that makes most decisions on behalf of others. Each individual has the authority to make their own decisions, with an eye to adding value to their team or to ConsenSys as a whole. A decentralized organization and the self-management way of working resonate symbiotically. Self-organization is a process where order emerges when individuals and teams interact within an unstructured system. Under fluctuations and feedback, order establishes based on the actions and interactions between team members. With teams establishing their own order and decision making strategies, this results in an organization that is decentralized. Since this process allows teams to constantly reorganize themselves based on what works best for them, the whole organization itself is able to survive and repair in times of chaos and unpredictability.
The failings of a traditional hierarchical system hit us right in the ‘gut,’ at a human and soul level.
ConsenSys’ unique organizational structure is built on trust and is heavily inspired by the components of a blockchain certification. In a discussion with Russell Verbeeten, he emphasized that ConsenSys is comprised of a network of interdependent teams cooperating while simultaneously pursuing their own goals. This structure mimics the communication structure of the decentralized systems ConsenSys builds together with the larger Ethereum ecosystem. ConsenSys embraces Conway’s law, which suggests that organizational structures should mirror the architectures of the technology they are building.
By mirroring the communication structure of the technology, ConsenSys has recognized a higher level of flexibility, openness, and innovation. Verbeteen shared that, “Blockchain powers innovation because the infrastructure developed on platforms like Ethereum brings online open systems that are available for developers, entrepreneurs, and companies, ready to repurpose for their own needs.” Innovation is vital. ConsenSys is organized the way it is because they need to optimize for innovation upon this emerging technology.
The failings of a traditional hierarchical system hit us right in the ‘gut,’ at a human and soul level. We sometimes have just an inkling that the system doesn’t fit us; other times it just feels downright oppressive. I believe globally we are starting to feel the effects of the current system quite emotionally. The centralized power structure in a traditional hierarchy has the power to unilaterally block great ideas and destroy productive innovations and consequently the human spirit. Alternatively, self-organizing and self-governing systems give opportunity for individuals to contribute ideas and watch them come to life with the support of a community. Web3 and decentralized organizational structures have the potential to unleash people who are creative and create space for everyone to bring their unique skills and passions to a collaborative value creation process. This is an emerging alternative paradigm for human organizations that I feel the world has long been waiting for.
Peters mentioned several great points above. At ConsenSys, the decentralized system allows employees to work transparently and encourages innovation, but it also impacts employees on an emotional level. Companies are starting to adopt non-traditional structures and new strategies to better support and motivate employees. In a healthy self-organizing team, creativity is embraced openly, employees have a direct input and connection to the company’s growth, and they have the freedom to utilize their knowledge to implement their own ideas. With blockchain certification technology being highly innovative and moldable for improvement, an organizational structure that supports a culture of innovation is essential to success.
The recent innovation of a rather simple data structure, the blockchain certification, is novel in human history and makes entirely new ways of coordinating social activities possible.
Blockchain redefines trust between entities and is revolutionary in the way individuals, businesses, and governments work together. Here are a few key thoughts gathered on Web3’s impact in our existing ecosystem:
Web3 is about controlling your own information and being able to relinquish the powers from a central party or monopoly. It is about empowerment of the…