Decentralised, distributed responsibility (decision-making) and open information systems, lower the cost of conceiving, implementing and distributing ideas, and liberate individual fulfilment. Recording individual decisions in open information systems distributes knowledge, informs future decision-making and ensures accountability.
Ideas (better ways of doing things or human potential) and implementing them (realising potential) are most effective and inexpensive when they are conceived and implemented by those whom they effect. At this level ideas are only adopted if they make a real improvement to our work, making it more efficient or more effective, that is, reducing the amount of work required or improving the result from the same amount of work.
At the level where an idea is applicable we often do not ask (or receive) extra money for the development and implementation of our ideas, but we still develop and implement them because they make our job easier and because contributing realises our own potential.
An idea adopted by the top of a control hierarchy and put through a centralised approval process is expensive to implement.
It gets expensive as soon as the boss asks for the business case, the business plan, the meeting of controllers to approve the money to start the project, which then begins with the project plan, the project manager, the external IT development team, cross-organisation working team, flights, accommodation, numerous meetings, pilot, roll out, and grudging implementation of a centralised, inflexible new process that is not any better than the last (which had been adapted under the radar to work).
And it is not any better, because what is needed is a flexible, decentralised decision-making system in which people at the local level implement their ideas, and a central, open information system that lets ideas spread; a change that invalidates centralised, top-down decision-making and the implementation of inflexible systems in the first place.
[Excerpt from The Common Purpose Manifesto]