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One from Many: VISA and the Rise of Chaordic Organization First Edition Edition

4.8 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1576753323
ISBN-10: 1576753328
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Dee Hock’s insights are brilliant and humane, his prescription is smart and workable. -- Alan M. Webber, Founding Editor, Fast Company magazine

I was quite simply stunned at how this man broke old, staid rules…Accessible, personal, and deeply inspiring. -- Robert Redford

One From Many is an organizational revolution that the world ignores at its stagnant peril. -- Ralph Nader

The most original approach to organizing we have been offered. It fits the ‘must-read,’ ‘must-absorb’ category for leaders. -- Tom Peters

About the Author

Dee Hock is founder and chairman emeritus of VISA. He

PETER M. SENGE is the founding chairperson of the Society for Organizational Learning and a senior lecturer at MIT. He is the co-author of "The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook, The Dance of Change," and "Schools That Learn "(part of the Fifth Discipline Fieldbook series)" "and has lectured extensively throughout the world. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 307 pages
  • Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers; First Edition edition (October 7, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1576753328
  • ISBN-13: 978-1576753323
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.9 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #346,633 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Robert David STEELE Vivas HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on January 28, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Edit of 30 Dec 07 to add comment and links.

New comment: something big is happening, in both politics and business. Moral green open transparent memes are in overdrive. See links.

I read a lot, a solace and a life line out of the madness of today. I finished up my week-end with this most unusual gem, and it is with some emotion that I put it down and take the time to write this review.

In my lifetime, there have been fewer than four individuals able to understand me and manage me, and Dee Hock now joins that number, sight unseen. This is one of the *good guys*! If he and Bill Bradley and Jim Turner (Transpartisanship) can come together, we can remake the world.

The book benefits from a Foreword by Peter Senge, who notes that VISA as it emerged was a disruptive concept that threatened traditional powers. Senge also notes the importance of distinguishing between enabling technologies, such as the Internet, and what is enabled, such as democracy or equitable wealth creation and sharing. Finally, Senge observes that global complexity requires distributed democracy, to which I and the author would both be quick to add: "and moral capitalism."

The book is at root about the failure of all of our instititutions, and the need to find a third way between over-bearing centralization and anarchic decentralization. The author coins the word "chaordic" to deswcribe an even-handed and often-changing balance between the two.

Dee Hock is a philosopher-king, and I am reminded of "Voltaire's Bastards" and "Consilience" as I read his denouncement of the Western concept of separability and his own understanding that complexity is about never-ending and alway-changing relationships.
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Dee Hock is not only a great story teller but also a "future teller". The history of his incredible involvement with the rise of VISA only sets the stage for a fascinating look at the future as it "might become and ought to be". Very much worth the read for anyone vested with leadership and/or innovation in any organization (which is everyone).

The one story not told is how the book was made to come about. After reading of Dee Hocks life experience it seems that it is simply "how it ought to be".
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When I saw this new recommendation from Amazon, I was thrilled. I loved Birth of the Chaordic Age, and was eager to learn what new wisdom Dee has to share with us. I checked out the reviews and table of contents and was disappointed to see that One from Many ... is the same book under a new title. Too bad.
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If, lets imagine, the library of Management Literature would be destoyed tomorrow, there's three treasured books I hope will be preserved somewhere, safe and sound. This is one of them.

Dee Hock's book transmits an extraordinary passion for human growth, organisational transition and hope for a better future. Why are organisations increasingly unable to manage their affairs? Why are individuals increasingly in conflict with the organisations of which they are part? Why are society and the biosphere increasingly in disarray? The answers (please do not expect to receive simple ones) to these questions spring from a powerful vision of what makes us humans both passionate and creative. A vision that has inspired the creation of VISA.

Dee Hock has been recognised as one of the eight individuals who most changed the way people live in the previous quarter century. I really hope this book will have equal impact on how we manage our lives and businesses. Essential reading.

No, it would not, by the way, be usefull to hand you the two other titles I hope wouldn't be lost... Just read this one and enjoy!
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I got this book and finished it in one weekend. It's well written and intriguing. For many casual readers, it's a very interesting point of view worth considering.

However, if you are into the way of the mind, combining sociology, psychology, Western, and Eastern practices of going your way in the world while navigating through its madness egoistical creations of the mind, this is a must read. Dee lived his life according to his principles, intentionally or unintentionally. His way educed him to create one of the most adaptive organizations in the business world.

He refers to his mind as the Old Monkey Brain. He doesn't identify with his thoughts, but is intrigued by them. He trained his old monkey brain from swinging tree to tree to become a creator of his world. He doesn't get in the pattern of wrestling with his own mind, like many mindful tend to do. He watches it, follows it when it's being lead by consciousness, and ultimately learns to tame his 4 giants: ego, envy, avarice, and ambition.

My favorite quote from the book: "if you think you can't do it, then why think?"

More Zen than anything I've read as of late.
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If you are in a position of leadership in a company you should read this book. It is absolutely incredible what they did. They were truly before their time. I believe this is the way of the new business world and if you are rooted in the old ways you will need to understand this philosophy or start planning your retirement.
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