Zappos to get rid of job titles in favor of Holacracy model

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Zappos is an e-commerce company that is owned by Amazon.com. Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh has decided to get rid of job titles and management positions as part of a system called “Holacracy.” The term Holacracy is from the Greek word “holon,” which means a whole inside something larger. The term is all about self-governing. Zappos is dividing the company into 400 circles. Inside of a circle, a worker can have more than one job.

This system does not mean that there will be leaders. “There are certainly people who hold a bigger scope of purpose for the organization than others. What it does do is distribute leadership into each role,” stated a Zappos worker.

Zappos is the largest company to use this model as they have 1,500 employees. Some other companies that are using this model includes Medium, a publishing company that is led by Twitter co-founder Evan Williams. One of the disadvantages of the model is that it can be difficult to ask for feedback or mentorship, especially for new members, according to an executive at Medium.

[Source: Quartz]

This article was written by Amit Chowdhry. You can follow me at @amitchowdhry or on Google+ at

Zappos to get rid of job titles in favor of Holacracy model Comments

  1. Evan Leybourn says:

    I applaud Zappo’s for trying to innovate in their corporate structure. This approach, where applied with appropriate corporate governance guidelines and validation metrics, has been proven to work. Although this seems to be the largest company I’ve seen take this approach.

    It should also be said that this isn’t new. Agile principles & practices, including self-organising and self-managing teams, have been applied to business practices for many years. Agile Business Management is something I’ve seen, practiced and wrote about since about 2006, and there are a few example from prior to that as well.

    -Evan, Melbourne
    Author: ‘Directing the Organisation’

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