Found in 6 comments on Hacker News
mcginleyr1 · 2015-04-24 · Original thread
I actually like the idea of a Holacracy, and you see it in alot of small startups intentionally or not. The generally tend to loose this as they grow. I recently read one of Ricardo Selmer's books on how he used Holacracy at Semco which is a huge multi national company. I highly suggest it.
kirsebaer · 2015-04-13 · Original thread
Holacracy seems to be taking some good ideas and packaging them with strange ideas, like saying that people should not talk about personal topics at work.

What about the Brazilian engineering firm Semco? Follows a non-hierarchical, self-organizing structure. Thousands of employees, very successful. Described in two books by CEO Ricardo Semler: The Seven-Day Weekend and Maverick.

lazyant · 2014-11-26 · Original thread
Semco. You may want to read Ricardo Semler's book it's 20 years old but for some reason it's not a classic in startups or US business environments (edit: oh I see someone mentioned it). He wrote a more recent book I haven't read: anyone with comments on this one?
enjo · 2013-12-11 · Original thread
SEMCO, to me, is the best example of this. While they haven't fired all of their managers, they are a very large company doing self-management in a whole bunch of different verticals.

Books by the SEMCO founder, Ricardo Semler:

Maverick -

The Seven Day Weekend -

kareemm · 2013-08-06 · Original thread
Holacracy is an instance of organizational democracy, but it's not new - I took a holacracy seminar 6 years ago. Kudos to Medium for using the framework though - it's one of the few that lays out, soup to nuts, how to run a democratic company.

There are many companies that operate using democracy as an organizing principle - Semco is the great-granddaddy of them all (two books - Maverick[1] and the 7 Day Weekend[2] - were written by Semco's founder, Ricardo Semler, about how Semco operates).

Other well-known democratically-run companies include Zappos, WL Gore, DaVita (a $12B company), and Dreamhost.

If you're interested, take a look at WorldBlu[3] for more - they've been building a community of these kinds of companies, have tons of resources on their site, and even have a conference on organizational democracy.

[1] -

[2] -

[3] -

tbrooks · 2008-09-17 · Original thread
The best business book I've ever read is The Seven Day Weekend by Ricardo Semler. I was turned onto Semler after Jason Fried recommended the book on one of 37signals live sessions.

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