Alternative to Top Down Control with Esther Derby


Esther Derby has spent the last twenty-five years helping companies design their environment, culture, and human dynamics for optimum success. She sat down with us to talk about an alternative to top down control: clarity, conditions, and constraints.

Her approach is a response to organizations saying that they want their teams to step into responsibility and to be empowered, but yet the management structure gets in the way of that. She doesn’t advocate just throwing away all the direction, but that we’re going to make a direction by making a compelling goal and attractor, rather than by telling individuals what to do on a day to day basis.

You give smart people a problem to solve and some constraints so they don’t have to figure out every single day whether they should use this tool or that tool, and they’ll come up with some really great solutions.

Howard Sublett hosts at Agile2018 in San Diego.

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