Google, Valve, W.L. Gore & Associates, The Morning Star Company, and Menlo Innovations have all experimented with more self-management, some more successfully than others. There are whole organizations dedicated to teaching company founders and executives how to create a flatter more self-managed business.
Is this a feasible goal? Should companies be self-managed? Can companies be self-managed? What can more traditional companies learn from companies that are flatter and more self-managed?
Ms. Winters explores the management role as it developed from pre-industrial age to the present, considering what managers did then and what they do today. She explores management behavior that is toxic to the company and behavior that is of value. Finally, Ms. Winters suggests strategies for reducing the number of managers at a company and suggests steps for managers to take to transition to a role that better fits a flatter company structure.