Open OS Draft

Levels of Organising

Groups of humans work significantly differently at different scales and the practices we use for organising need to change with them.

What works amazingly well for 7 people won't work for 12. There are only so many retreats we can go to a year before we get fatigued. Collaboration has a cost and we need to spend our attention wisely.

The same water molecules behave very differently when in different patterns of ice, liquid or steam. So too do groups have different properties as the number of people increase.


Our pyschology has evolved in an environment which is very different from todays world. Many things are the same and we are nothing if not adaptable but much is fundamentally different.

One of the most important levels to consider when designing systems is how people will relate with them at an individual level.

At the end of the day the only thing we control is ourselves.


Small, diverse teams of people in groups from 4 to 9 are the core unit of organising.

Pods can be tight where people work with each other every day or loose where people touch base once a month.

Pods have clear boundaries with explicit joining and leaving protocols.


Both Individuals and Pods can be part of a Community. Communities are easy to join and hard to stay. The key aspects of healthy communities are interdependence and trust.

In a community reputation can be maintained implicitly and the friction of collaboration is low. They provide resilience and natural safety nets.


Networks are the key to unlocking scale. They are built with permissionless protocols that anyone can join as long as they communicate in the right way.

A network of networks is just a network and their nature does not fundamentally change as they get bigger.