Outlandish: A tech worker cooperative in the UK sociocracy case study

This case study is helpful if you are part of a worker coop, and would like to get a feel for what it is like to implement sociocracy.

This study features the digital/tech worker co-op Outlandish in the UK and its adoption of Sociocracy to help spread responsibility and accountability for new business and operations across the firm. The founder, Harry Robbins, is part of a new coalition of tech co-ops in the UK, some of which are using dynamic governance models. 

Outlandish team members

After hiring an employee that was difficult to work with, the founders of the cooperative realized that they did not want to make everyone an owner/partner. This led to a distinction between partners and employees at the company. Many of the partners felt that Harry was running the show and had different ideas around proper leadership.

It was at this point that Harry introduced the idea of Sociocracy. He thought it would be an easy fix to their decision making qualms, but soon realized that the structure alone would not solve the problems in the co-op. Through the trials and tribulations of introducing Sociocracy, Outlandish learned the importance of offering training for new members and ensuring that the decision making process is clear and well understood by all involved.

Read the full case study