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Issue 27 - 03 | Changing the Rules: Lessons from a Starfish World

By Ori Brafman and Rod Beckstrom
Published Oct. 7, 2006 2:09 a.m.
Such seemingly dissimilar groups as the Apache Indians, music swapping programs, Wikipedia, Alcoholics Anonymous and Al Queda have one thing in common: they are all starfish. According to Brafman and Beckstrom, each of these resilient groups succeeds because they are absent any hierarchy (head) and conventional organizations (spiders) best watch their backs.

About Ori Brafman and Rod Beckstrom | Ori Brafman is a lifelong entrepreneur. His adventures include a wireless startup, health food advocacy group, and a network of CEOs working on public benefit projects, which he co-founded with Rod Beckstrom. He holds a BA in Peace and Conflict Studies from UC Berkeley and an MBA from Stanford Business School. Rod A. Beckstrom is a serial start-up entrepreneur. He founded CATS Software Inc, which he took public and has helped start and build other high tech firms. Rod has served on various private and nonprofit boards. He holds a BA and MBA from Stanford and is a Fulbright Scholar. Brafman and Beckstrom are the authors of Starfish and the Spider: The Unstoppable Power of Leadership, available from Penguin Group, October 2006.

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