All posts by Martina Röll

About Martina Röll

Martina Röll is a Co-Founder of Structure & Process. She leads the Organisational Development, Consulting and Coaching work of the company. See all of Martina's Roles here. Contact her at martina@structureprocess.com.

Not having to worry about expectations…

… is one of the aspects I enjoy most, being part of a team that runs on Holacracy.

you don’t have to worry about the implicit expectations or “shoulds” of others; instead, you can just show up, be yourself, and do your best within your roles, trusting that the process will catch and integrate any tensions that result. (Brian Robertson)

It is not necessary to worry about

  • what others will think or feel about my work
  • wether it will be “enough”
  • what others may think or feel about my process
  • if I should have done things differently.

Or so is the theory.

In practise, I still stress out a lot over being “a good leader”, a good steward of the team, a good Lead Link of our Holacracy Circles.

I try my best. I work in the best way I can and let the rest flow through the Holacracy process: it allows and encourages anyone to come up with anything that could be improved (from that person’s perspective). It can then be processed constructively together and codified in our governance records, the standards by which we work together (more on how our company is set up here).

Our conversations are mostly impersonal: they are usually about the work, not about the specific way in which a person is doing their work. The conversations happen between role holders for the benefit of the organisation. It is about how the work should be done, not about how I am or have been doing the work.

Except when it actually is about personal performance: When a person is clearly not doing their job according to the agreed-on principles, our process also shows it very clearly and opens up a conversation about what can be done (should the job be reassigned to someone else? Does the person holding the role need more support?). This makes the conversation about changing the person’s job or reassigning their roles much easier than if it were mixed up with a conversation about the structure of the work.

Having said all that, we do run into personal conflicts too. I hope that people will speak up, and address me personally when I messed up, or that they process it through Holacracy, so that we can all learn collectively, and build structure that may prevent future conflicts.

Bring your email inbox down to Zero!

How do you feel about your email? Happy? Overwhelmed? Stressed?

As we go along working with teams and organisations, we often find that individuals feel overwhelmed and out-of-control with their email, putting them under stress and making it difficult to relate to others. After all, working with others will only put more email into your inbox!

If you would like to improve how you handle your email, and spend less time checking and worrying about your inbox and more time getting things done, our Inbox Zero Guide is for you.

Written by personal productivity expert Rob van den Brand, it walks you through a series of simple steps that make you regain control of your email inbox. If you would like personal support, we offer live online coaching for this too. But let’s start simply: Request your free copy of “Inbox Zero” here!

Wie gewinne ich Menschen für mein Projekt, Vorhaben oder Startup?

(This article is a German translation of “Attracting people to join your project, startup or organisation”, published on the Structure & Process Blog on April 9th 2015)

Menschen bringen ein Projekt ans Leben.

Auf unserem Weg mit Structure & Process haben wir drei Wege entdeckt, über die sich Menschen unserem Team anschließen:

Continue reading Wie gewinne ich Menschen für mein Projekt, Vorhaben oder Startup?

Attracting people to join your project, startup or organisation

(Diesen Artikel gibt es auch auf deutsch.)

People are what makes a project come alive.

On our journey so far, we have seen three pathways through which people become interested in joining our team:

1. A compelling Purpose

Our company’s purpose is explicit: “Purposeful Organisations in which people love to work.”

When the organisation’s purpose is clear and compelling, it acts as an attractor: Even with an unclear product offering, people show up and say: “hey, this is interesting! What do you do? How can I contribute?”

These people will sometimes join independent of the currently available “jobs”. They are not picky about what exactly they will be doing, as long as it contributes to a meaningful cause.

When invited, these people will often bring in their personal special skills and creativity, which can lead to new directions, innovation in the products, and… interesting tensions. :)

2. Interesting Work

What is the actual work that needs to be done? What is the job?

Some people are drawn to specific types of work, specific activities  and want to develop professionally in these. Some of our current and former team members found us through this: they noticed some of our role role descriptions or job offerings and applied towards these. Continue reading Attracting people to join your project, startup or organisation

Purposeful Organisations in which people love to work.

150113-CompanyPurposeChangeWe changed our company purpose at our partner meeting in Utrecht on January 13th: “People thriving in collaboration” became “Purposeful Organisations in which people love to work.”

We emphasize “organisations” now. This comes from a better understanding of what our work of the last months has been about: we are interested in _organisations_: structures that are transpersonal, sustainable over a long time, in changing circumstances.

Organisations amplify the powers of the individual and provide an interface for the outside world. They are hubs – points of connection – and fields – spaces from which new directions can emerge.

_People_ are key to this: they make the effort that is necessary to sustain organisations.

Why do we, humans, care about organisations? Why make the effort to build, or work in them?

  1. Because work can be meaningful. (Purpose, Meaning.)
  2. Because work can be satisfying. (Effectiveness. Efficiency. Input-Output. Results.)
  3. Because work can be joyful. (Enjoyment. Process.)

Continue reading Purposeful Organisations in which people love to work.

Meeting as Business Partners (On the Client Relationship)

I have found it very satisfying lately to meet my clients not as their consultant, but as their collaborator.

Often, as a consultant, it is my job to open and hold a space for the client: The clients use it to speak about their problems, issues, situations, and I listen with patience and offer my perspective or advice. Consultants learn a lot about their clients. Often, the clients don’t learn much about their consultants. (Except that we are smart, and we are good listeners. Well.)

Consultants usually don’t share much about their lives as consultants, their own business development or their personal situation. And why would we?

When a space opened up in a client meeting early last month – we had finished the agenda one hour earlier than planned and found ourselves with a lot of time on our hands suddenly – I took the opportunity to share from the heart what was going on with my company, Structure & Process, at this moment: Continue reading Meeting as Business Partners (On the Client Relationship)