Each stage of human development features a unique way of organizing work. From hunting and gathering, to agriculture, to industry, to the Information Age, each emergent represents a radical evolutionary expansion of capacity, and each remakes the world in its turn.

So what’s next? Frederic Laloux‘s blockbuster book, Reinventing Organizations, offers  compelling answers to that question. A McKinsey consultant for many years, Fred has identified and researched what he calls “next stage“ organizations, and identifies the specific features that set them apart.   

The key emergent of next-stage organizations harkens back to early human history: small bands of people on a mission, each deeply seen and valued by the others, responding together to changing conditions and making their way forward.

Today’s cutting-edge version of archaic bands are self-managed teams, which have become the building blocks of companies of all types and sizes. It’s a fascinating (and explicitly integral!) thesis whose success is demonstrated in organizations all over the world.

In this conversation with Jeff Salzman, Frederic Laloux unpacks his key ideas and lays out some of the new rules of the road ahead.