Articles Tree is Excited About

Hierarchy is Good. Hierarchy is Essential. And Less Isn’t Always Better ( by Bob Sutton, Stanford professor and co-author of Scaling Up Excellence.  For years i've been hoping to see people move beyond "hierarchy bad/egalitarianism good" dichotomy to a more realistic, complex, nuanced understanding of what approach to use when and how to do each well.  For me this article is a sign that that conversation is moving foward, yea!

Social Innovation From the Inside Out by Warren Nilsson & Tana Paddock ( .  What can be learned from organizations that sustain institutional change with ongoing creative momentum?  “The organizations that we have worked with and learned from don’t resemble each other much at the level of strategy, structure, or leadership. Yet they have in common one apparently simple practice: They pay a great deal of attention to the inner experiences of the people who work in them.”

Board/Executive Director Tensions by Governance Matters.  OK, perhaps this article does not exactly qualify as "exciting."  Nevertheless, it offers such clearheaded analysis and advice that i am including it here for your benefit.

When G.M. Was Google
(the art of the corporate devotional) by Nicholas Lemann in the New Yorker (December 1, 2014). Fun comparison between these 2 companies.  While companies tend to attribute their own successes to uniquely wonderful leadership and management, in reality (a) environment and conditions determine a lot of the outcomes, and (b) much of the wisdom of good management is perennial, not unique.  (For example, many virtues touted by Google's top management were similarly touted back in 1982's bestseller In Search of Excellence, while some companies the same book lauded have long since disappeared.)  Furthermore, scale matters:  no company can be the same at 100,000 employees as it is at 1,000.  Oftentimes, the innovation of one era creates the problem the next generation needs to solve, part of a history that is both cyclical and developmental.

What Google Learned From Its Quest to Build the Perfect Team
by Charles Duhigg in the NYT Magazine (Feb. 25, 2016).  Turns out the best teams foster psychological safety, through people listening to one another (sharing roughly equal speaking turns) and showing sensitivity to each other's feelings and needs. Not exactly a surprise! Nonetheless it's good to see the business press acknowledging the primacy of social intelligence in getting things done.