In the cornucopia of organizations, four forms of governance tend to emerge:
- adhocracy, governance as needed (laissez-faire) (akin to anarchy),
- bureaucracy, government by committee (or committed group of stakeholders or those seen with most competence, i.e. the bureau),
- do-ocracy, government by whoever takes the initiative (by those who DO) (akin to libertarianism),
- benevolent dictator, government by a (hired or elected) director or founding executive.
Do-ocracy is a vertical axis of individualism and bureaucracy is a horizontal axis of collective decision-making. Economically, the comparison would be like capitalism vs. socialism; politically, like conservatives vs. democrats.
There are interconnected reasons why organizations die:
- funding runs out,
- entropy -- trash piles up or issues pile up and no one does anything ("burn out").
- incompetent leadership,
- ignorance and/or inadequate purpose.
The solution is a balance of all four types of governance. Try the World Game on a cork board. It utilizes all four styles.