Addleson ends his book by saying “going topless (non-hierarchical) never works perfectly. On the contrary, getting work done this way is rather messy and certainly not efficient in the sense of neat and tidy. Topless is often slow […] however if we believe openness and accountability is worthwhile, necessary for good work, we have to work at achieving both.”
At the end of the movie Contact, Jodi Foster asks the alien, if people weren’t ready to see proof of another form of life out there, what was the purpose of all the effort humankind went through for just her alone to experience it. The answer was “little steps.”
Today, few large organizations are prepared or ready to go topless, to throw traditional and often outdated management theory and hierarchy out the window. They need time and to start small. They need to focus on putting people first above all else.
So what was the point of Addelson’s book? It is to take that first small step, tell others and start small with the revolution of how we all can live more productive and rewarding lives.