Made Without Managers: One Company’s Journey to New Ways of Working

new ways of working

Two years ago an idea started to germinate here at Mayden. It was an idea that was to percolate slowly, building momentum and gathering steam. Bit by bit, it would come to involve staff from right across the company. This project would go on to test what we thought we knew, encourage us to go deep in reflecting and evaluating, but would ultimately bring individuals together in a huge collective effort that at first seemed a bit crazy…

Behind the hyped up headlines of new ways of working, and beyond the academic and theoretical debates as to whether progressive practices can really work, sits another way. Our way. At Mayden we don’t have a traditional management structure based on a people hierarchy. Teams manage themselves and their work and leaders can emerge from anywhere in the business. We work the way we do because we believe it’s best for our customers, innovation, customer service and employees – not because we are following any kind of fad or fashion. We have co-created our ‘Mayden Way’ together and we’re pretty proud of what we have achieved…

… We wanted to share our story.

New ways of working - the “Mayden Way”

There is a wealth of excellent theoretical literature out there about new ways of working that challenge traditional norms. However when we embarked on our own organisational change journey we found there wasn’t much out there that we could draw on, that was based on actual real world, lived experience. We wanted to address that imbalance in the hope that others could learn from our journey – the highs and lows, what went right and what didn’t go so well, and what it can really be like when a company decides to walk the walk.

Five Year Forward View for Mental Health

We don’t believe that organisations need to settle for traditional structures that hold them back, and that it is OK to prod, poke, lift the bonnet and challenge the status quo. By sharing what we have learned along the way it is our hope that readers will see how a less hierarchical structure can unleash creativity and innovation, make it easier to respond to opportunities and threats, as well as boost productivity, efficiency and engagement.

What can organisations expect to learn from “Made Without Managers”?

It’s important for readers of our book to understand that our story is not a blueprint that can be directly cut and pasted. Every organisation will have different motivations for wanting to try something new and will therefore experience it differently. However we hope that our story provides clear, practical insights rooted firmly in reality, as well as advice and guidance gained through experience, that will help to make any organisation’s transition easier.

Getting started takes guts, determination, commitment, a belief that there can be a better way, and a desire to simply make things ‘better’. It’s certainly a journey, and one that is never truly finished. We are genuinely excited and intrigued to keep working on ours. In doing so, we hope we might inspire you to try something new along the way.

Mayden’s book ‘Made Without Managers’ is now available to pre-order:

new ways of working


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