Recently I was asked to give a talk about startups to the prépa classes of St. Jean de Passy in Paris, France. These are top French students on the business school track. They’re super sharp and it was a privilege to spend time with them.
I chose to talk about how startup teams are structured and why thoughtful organization design is becoming a big competitive advantage. I wanted the students to think about questions like: How can companies grow large without succumbing to bureaucracy? and What makes work fun?
The book Reinventing Organizations by Frederic Laloux deals with these sorts of questions and has become a big inspiration to me and my startup colleagues. Early chapters look at different ways that humans have organized throughout history. Later chapters make a compelling case for what lies ahead, including case studies of several modern-day Teal companies.
This presentation is my attempt to share some of the book’s wisdom with St. Jean’s students. Here’s a link to the full slides.
Technical Note: The presentation was created using the excellent open source reveal.js HTML presentation framework. It works on desktop and mobile and supports direct linking to individual slides. The source code is on Github.