Podcast: Leadermorphosis


Leadermorphosis is a podcast exploring the emerging world of self-management and progressive organisations.
Hosted by Lisa Gill, each week features a guest thought leader or practitioner offering a unique perspective on new and innovative ways of working. Leadermorphosis is powered by
Tuff Leadership Training, a team of consultants and coaches who train managers in a style of leadership that produces motivated, responsible employees and self-reliant teams.

Host – Lisa Gill
Editing – Shaun Harvey
Intro track VO – Maria Hentzel
Intro track music – Robert Valsinger


Ep. 23 Gary Hamel on busting bureaucracy for good

Gary Hamel is one of the world’s leading business thinkers, Professor at London Business School and director of The Management Lab. In this conversation, we talk about how we can bust bureaucracy for good, make our organisations more experimental, and reinvent what it means to be a leader. 

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Ep. 22 Chuck Blakeman on rehumanising organisations

Chuck Blakeman is an entrepreneur, author, and speaker passionate about giving people their brains back in organisations. Although we’ve left the technologies of the industrialist age behind, outdated assumptions and practices are still very much alive in most workplaces today. Chuck shares insights about the origins of management versus leadership, distributed decision-making, and how to unlearn old habits to shift our organisational culture into what he calls the participation age. Listen to learn more about unlocking mission-centred, self-managing organisations. 

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Ep. 21 Zoe Nicholson from Here on reconnecting to an organisation’s purpose

Zoe Nicholson shares the role of Chief Executive at healthcare social enterprise Here in the UK and describes her job as tethering the organisation to its purpose. She shares some of the practices they’ve developed at Here, inspired by sources like Frederic Laloux’s “Reinventing Organisations” and mindfulness, as well as some of the challenges of working in a highly regulated and hierarchical sector. 

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Ep. 20 Anabel Montiel from Nearsoft on people development in a horizontal organisation

Anabel Montiel, psychologist and People Developer at Mexican IT company Nearsoft, shares how she has helped the company grow to 300+ people without sacrificing its culture and what personal growth and development can look like in a horizontal organisation. She also talks about how feedback is built into the culture at Nearsoft, right from the onboarding process.

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Ep. 19 Simon Mont from Harmonize on why changing the structures of organisations isn’t enough

Simon Mont, founder of Harmonize, talks about his article “Autopsy of a Failed Holacracy” and the debate it provoked. He believes that if we really want to reimagine our organisations, we need to look at individuals, the organisation, and the larger economic system – changing organisational structures alone isn’t enough. We talk about nonprofits, leadership, and how we can connect the dots across organisational transformation communities. 

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Episode #18 –
Edwin van der Geest from Incentro on being a self-managed learning organisation

Edwin van der Geest, former Managing Director and Self-Management Ambassador at IT company Incentro, talks about the transformation he led for several years. He shares practices they’ve developed, including self-set salaries and Minimum Viable Teams, and the challenges and triumphs they experienced along the way.

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Episode #17 – Björn Lundén from BL Information on scrapping stupid rules in companies

Björn Lundén, the founder of Björn Lundén Information in Sweden, is an original rebel. He doesn’t believe in rules or bosses or ‘secret salaries’. We talk about how his company of 115 employees has been self-managed for over thirty years, his thoughts on the future of work, and why so few interested visitors actually implement this way of working when they return to their own companies.

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Episode #16 – Marianne Osorio from Wondering School on liberating education

Marianne Osorio is researching “liberating education” and shares what she’s learnt so far from democratic schools in her home country, Brazil, and beyond. 

We also talk about a documentary she’s making about schools in the Netherlands using Sociocracy to facilitate dialogue and consent-based decisions amongst students and educators.

How to follow Marianne:

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My blog about ESBZ, the radical school in Berlin we talk about

Episode #15 – People from Hack and Paint on self-management in a remote team

Marin Petrov and Christian Haniszewski have worked at some of the most creative companies in the world but wanted to create their own company with freedom at its core. Thus, Hack and Paint was born. I talked to Marin, Christian and three of their teammates, Martina Petkov, Miglena Chervenkova, and Stefan Doychev, about the challenges of working in a self-managing team, especially when no one is based in the same country. In particular, we talk about the importance of personal development, being human, and their experiences of Holacracy practices.

How to follow Hack and Paint:

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Work Rules! by Laszlo Bock

Episode #14 – Doug Kirkpatrick from The Self-Management Institute on principles for self-managing organisations

Doug Kirkpatrick, co-founder of The Self-Management Institute, original team member of Morning Star and author of “Beyond Empowerment”, shares his insights about common misconceptions of self-management, what it really takes to have self-management work, and the example of Haier (the largest appliance manufacturer in the world) in China which is organised into 4,000 self-managing teams. 

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Episode #13 – Ed Gonsalves from The Cooplexity Institute on breaking paradigms through play

Ed Gonsalves has spent more than two decades studying the concept of play and specialises in designing senior executive programmes for high performance teams in entrepreneurial and large organisations. Is it possible to discover new paradigms of working and leading by incorporate unstructured play into our learning experiences? What do carnaval, prisons and nature have to do with self-managing teams? Ed, an associate professor at Toulouse Business School, Barcelona and the co-founder of The Cooplexity Institute, shares what he has learnt.

How to follow Ed:

More resources:

  • ‘The Land’ (Erin Davis, 2015) – a short documentary film about the nature of play, risk and hazard set in a “adventure” playground in North Wales
  • Contact us for further resources and references about play and organisational learning (Ed being an academic, he has plenty!)

Episode #12 – Karin Tenelius from Tuff Leadership Training on giving away the authority

Karin has been experimenting with employee-driven organisations and self-managing teams since the nineties. She shares the approach she’s developed which involves “giving all of the authority away” and then coaching people in a higher level of communication skills, resulting in radical and rapid transformations.

Listen to learn about how she transformed nearly a dozen companies and the successes (and failures) she encountered along the way.

How to follow Karin:

Website: http://karintenelius.com/


Episode #11 – Lotta Croiset van Uchelen from Schuberg Philis on self-steering teams and wholeness

IT infrastructure company Schuberg Philis has over 250 people and no managers.

Lotta Croiset van Uchelen, Chief DNA Officer, and Daniela Resch, Wellbeing Researcher, talk about how engineers are organised in self-steering teams.They share examples of practices that are “hygienic”, dynamic systems as well as what the well-being researchers are discovering about current challenges and areas for improvement.

How to follow Lotta and Daniela:

Check out their culture blogs at https://stories.schubergphilis.com/

Episode #10 – Samantha Slade from Percolab on practicing self-management

Samantha Slade is the cofounder of Percolab, an international community of companies interested in exploring what the future of organisations can be. 
Based in Montreal, Canada, she is writing a book on the seven practices to help organisations become more horizontal and rewire us for self-management.
In this episode, she shares some insights from the book; her journey as the cofounder of a living systems, self-managing organisation; and her thoughts on how it’s possible to reinvent financial models in business, including self-set salaries.

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Episode #9 – Helen Sanderson from HSA on reinventing home care

Helen Sanderson is a leader of several social enterprises specialising in “person-centred care.”

She shares her story of stepping back as CEO of her company HSA to create a self-managing team and all the leadership and culture challenges they encountered along the way. Helen also announces a new and exciting project which involves self-managed well-being teams, à la Buurtzorg in the Netherlands, with an ambitious mission to scale from six to 600 in under three years. And beneath all of this is a deeply personal sense of purpose…

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Episode #8 – Paul Taylor from Bromford Labs on rethinking failure in your organisation

Paul Taylor, as a ‘Lab Coach’ at social enterprise Bromford, is on a mission to change how organisations perceive failure. Inspired by radical, self-management pioneers like healthcare company Buurtzorg, he shares some of the working-out-loud experiments he’s been running to innovate product and ser

vice development and reinvent management.

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Episode #7 – Joost Minnaar from Corporate Rebels on making work more fun

Joost Minnaar shares his insights from visiting more than 50 of the most inspiring workplaces around the world. Appalled by the statistic that only 13% of employees worldwide are engaged at work, Joost co-founded The Corporate Rebels to make work more fun. We talk about The Corporate Rebels Canvas, supportive leadership, why we should be wary of the latest organisational fads, and how to involve employees in running experiments in your company to create an inspiring workplace.

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Episode #6 – David Tomas from Cyberlick on the happiest company in the world

David is the cofounder of digital marketing company Cyberclick in Barcelona organised around happiness. Far from being a gimmick, though, he has developed ways of measuring happiness and creating a self-managing company where people can find fulfillment at work. We talk about the power of habit, scaleup companies and inspiring Mondays.

How to follow David:

Book of the week:

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Episode #5 – Tom Nixon from Maptio on creative authority in self-managing companies

Tom Nixon is an entrepreneur and coach who works with founders to help them realise their ideas, and supports organisations to reconnect them to their purpose. We talk about his latest venture Maptio which is a mapping tool for self-managing organisations. How do you avoid creative entropy as your company grows? How do you get people to step into their responsibility? What is the role of the founder or CEO?

How to follow Tom:

Book of the week:

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Episode #4 – Francesca Pick from OuiShare on a lab for new ways of working

Francesca Pick is a project manager, consultant and speaker that works on how tech can change business, society and human interaction. She is a Connector at OuiShare, which she describes as a lab for new ways of working, and her latest project is Cobudget, a collaborative funding tool. We talk about practices she and her colleagues have developed at OuiShare like Minimum Viable Bureaucracy and we debate whether organisations with no hierarchies exist.

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Episode #3 – Jurriaan Kamer from Agile CIO on what it means to be a truly agile organisation

This episode features Jurriaan Kamer, the founder of Agile CIO and member of The
. He helps organisations become adaptive, responsive, self-organising ecosystems by implementing new practices, structures, rhythms and technologies that enable transparency, openness, innovation and a progressive way of leading. We talk about agile, leadership and whether we need managers at all.

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Episode #2 – Susan Basterfield from Enspiral on self-management

This week I spoke to Susan Basterfield who is a Foundation Catalyst and Ambassador within the self-managing collective, Enspiral and helps individuals and organisations worldwide experiment with new ways of working and being. She is also co-author of Reinventing Startups and has recently collaborated with Ricardo Semler’s consultancy LeadWise to develop a Practical Self-Management Intensive (a five-week immersive online programme). We talk about self-management and learning through doing.
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Episode #1 – Perry Timms from PTHR on reinventing HR and work

My guest this episode is Perry Timms, a practitioner who has spent the last twenty years in technology, organisational change and HR. He is also a global and TEDx speaker on the future of work, and a WorldBlu® certified Freedom at Work Consultant and Coach, helping organisations work in more liberated, democratic ways. We talk about what the future of HR, and work, could look like.

How to follow Perry:

Book(s) of the week:

Other resources:

  • Perry’s fantastic TEDx talk, “The Future of Work”
  • The “Indian woman” I (rather ignorantly!) referred to in the podcast, interviewed in the documentary “Before the Flood”, is Sunita Narain. Here’s a link for more about her

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