Awhile back Jason at Signal vs Noise recommended a book called Maverick which I immediately ordered. It sat on my shelf unread until just prior to my trip to Brasil. I figured it would make a good book for the flight down and as a bonus it was about a Brasilian company.
The book was fabulous.
It’s the story of turning a company inside out and removing management and giving that control to the workers. The book is a narrative story and it is so fast paced you’ll be able to read it in a few days. It will inspire you to overcome obstacles and think about situations completely differently. Semco enables the employees themselves to hire their supervisors, their managers, and even select warehouse locations and make decisions ranging from vendors to uniform colors. They don’t have a layer of management to do this anymore. Since employees as a team can also fire the supervisors they have the incentive to find someone good. They even have open books and everybody sets their own salary (and bonus).
- The Wikipedia Article on Ricardo Semler.
- Read the first 5 pages on Amazon
- Lessons from Semco on Structure, Growth and Change
- Semco web site