The Starfish and the Spider: The Unstoppable Power of Leaderless Organizations
by Ori Brafman and Rod A. Beckstrom
‘If you cut off a spider’s head, it dies; but if you cut off a starfish’s leg, it grows a new one, and that leg can grow into an entirely new starfish. Traditional top-down organisations are like spiders, but now starfish organisations are changing the face of business and the world.’ This book is a sober but enlightening account of the issues of centralisation (spider) vs. decentralisation (starfish), and the need for companies to find their ‘sweet spot’ on this continuum between accountability and innovation. Some of the stories are familiar and others are not. But the starfish/spider framework casts new light on them all. This brilliant metaphor is likely to become common parlance.