What is management by loerarchy®?

“Loerarchy” is the opposite of hierarchy. So if a hierarchy looks like this…

…a loerarchy (rhymes with hierarchy) looks like this:


Notice that the box which used to be at the very top, is now at the very bottom. And those that were on the bottom are now up top.

What this means is that in a loerarchy, the usual power dynamic is reversed

The little boxes representing managers are positioned below the boxes of those they manage. This means managers should sees themselves as subordinate to their employees, and treat them accordingly. (Keep in mind that organizational authority always increases as you move UP these diagrams.) And the person who would normally be at the top of a hierarchy (for most businesses, this is usually the CEO or its owner), is now at the bottom. This individual has the least organizational power, not the most.

Frontline employees, on the other hand, are now up top. They possess the most organizational power, according to management by loerarchy. Therefore they should be treated as if they are the ‘boss’. It is to these individuals that management should defer in all organizational matters, as opposed to attempting to dictate to their employees how things should be.

According to management by loerarchy®, in other words, employees are in charge of their managers – not the other way around. 


Why management by loerarchy®?

Any for-profit enterprise that adopts management by loerarchy stands to benefit in a variety of ways.

First, they’ll be more successfulthat is, profitableThis is because organizations that embrace loerarchcial management practices will find their employees to be…

  •    More motivated
  •    More productive
  •    More creative
  •    More flexible
  •    More willing to take the initiative
  •    More willing to accept responsibility
  •    More appreciative of their managers, and management’s efforts

Furthermore, organizations that choose management by loerarchy will be better able to…

  •    Attract top candidates
  •    Retain top contributors
  •    Anticipate and/or react to changes in the marketplace faster, and more effectively than their competitors
  •    Maximize worker productivity


These organizations will also be more…

  •    Efficient
  •    Innovative
  •    Agile
  •    Reliable
  •    Competitive


What management by loerarchy® means for managers

For managers, management by loerarchy means re-thinking your relationship with your employees. Your function is not to direct, control, or otherwise tell your employees what to do. 

Instead, it is to listen to, help, and support those you manage.

Your employees are your boss, in other words. You put yourself and your organization at a disadvantage when you behave otherwise.


Why management by loerarchy® works

First, recognize that…

  • People are your most important asset.

More than any other single factor, great people are the key to sustained organizational success. It’s not clever marketing, quality products, or even low, low prices. Hardworking, motivated people giving their all each and every day to do the best job they can are the critical advantage.  

  • Engaged employees outperform those who aren’t.

Employees who are engaged in their jobs and enthusiastic about their work are far more productive than their less motivated counterparts. More so than experience, skill, intelligence—even talent—job engagement is the decisive factor. And according to the all the available evidence, the best way to motivate workers is to…

  • Give them what they want.

Getting the hoped for levels of worker enthusiasm can be boiled down to one simple mandate: Ask your employees what they want/need to do their jobs better, and then give it to them, to the extent that’s possible. Keep in mind that not all of your employees will want the same thing. Nor will you be able to give ALL of your employees EVERYTHING they want. But that is not necessary, nor even the point. By demonstrating that you are willing to listenand then at least attempt to follow through on what they ay (or explain why you can’t)you will be rewarded with the enthusiasm needed to give your organization its best chance of succeeding.

Again, your job, as a manager, is to figure out what your employees want – and then do your absolute best to give it to them.

This is what great managers do.


What management by loerarchy® is NOT

Management by loerarchy does NOT mean doing everything your employees tell you to do. 

Nor does it mean letting your employees run your business.

Yes  – you should treat your employees as if they are in charge. As a manager, your organization will benefit should you do this. But management by loerarchy is effective because it recognizes that your employees are better positioned than you to know what your business needs to be successful. And that’s because many of them are closer to the REAL ‘boss’ of your, or any business.

Namely, customers.

By virtue of their proximity to people who purchase your organization’s products and/or services, frontline employees will typically know better than you what’s needed to build consumers’ trust, make them happy, and ultimately convince them to part with their hard-earned cash. And if those frontline employees don’t deal with customers directly (I’m thinking of assembly line workers now, or anyone else involved in product/service production/distribution), they will still likely have much better information than their managers about what their organization needs to do to succeed.

Most employees don’t need their managers to boss them around, in other words. There’s enough marketplace actorscustomers, suppliers, contractors, distributors, government regulators, shareholders, etc.doing that already. Your job as a manager is to help and support them.

Management by loerarchy recognizes all this. 

As a consequence, it is a better way to organize and run your business.

And it is the key to unlocking the unrealized potential in your employees that you’ve always known they have.


Interested in learning more about management by loerarchy® and how to implement it at your own organization?

Arrange for a consultation by emailing your request to consulting@thesubordinateisin.com.



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