Threatened by Extermination: Swedish Leadership Style

LESS 2011

The first day of the LESS 2011 conference is over. I am sorry to report I am not ecstatic after the first day. There were some nice talks and some not-so-nice ones, which is to be expected, but generally I felt that the speakers spent too much time on discussing models instead of working hard on making their talk come alive and be interesting and understandable for their audience. As J. B. Rainsberger (@jbrains), a Canadian master developer, put it one of tweets during the day: “Speakers, please tell me stories. They entertain me more, and they help me understand more”.

There is much to say about the topics of the conference (Organisational Transformation, Lean & Agile Product Development, and Complexity & Systems Thinking), but tonight I am just going to settle on reflecting a bit about something that the last speaker of the day, James Sutton, author and software-systems architect, said in passing during his keynote. He mentioned that from what he had heard about management and company culture in the Scandinavian countries, they were much further along than in other countries. Basically, what he implied is that the these countries have a more sophisticated style of management. Less command and control and more people-orientation.

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