Tesla: the First Value Management Company?

A recent podcast series suggests that Tesla may be the first organisation to achieve and be driven by simplicity the other side of Complexity. Here, I look at why that matters and how it fits with Value Management.

[Since this article was first published, a further three-part series has been written that explores the themes in this article in more depth.]

I recently came across a ten part podcast series about Tesla and I highly recommend you tune in for yourself: it’s well worth the time.

I’ve personally now spent more than four decades in the technology sector considering three Big Questions, and I think I’ve got some answers:

  • Why are approaches that don’t work still repeatedly tried? An inability to recognise, understand and harness Complexity.
  • Why is there so little genuine systems thinking? The dominance of “left brain” characteristics in how People think, reinforced by management and economic orthodoxy.
  • Why is the biosphere in the mess it is? Because of counter-fiat money and the disconnect with true Value.

I’ve then dedicated myself to trying to answer the even bigger question of how organisations and individuals can help to turn these things around.

That’s what Value Management is all about.

In fast-changing situations – and under conditions of uncertainty – what stands out is that successful and sustainable organisations display Complexity-Aware, People-Centred and Value-Led traits:

  • Recognising, serving and harnessing the attributes of Complexity.
  • Understanding how People think and work best, empowering them to use discernment.
  • Being fully customer-led when it comes to Value and orienting fully around that.

In these ways, successful leaders and entrepreneurs within those organisations appear to relentlessly seek simplicity the other side of Complexity.

To date, though, success in this way has been more a matter of luck or good fortune, rather than the deliberate and conscious application of replicable principles and processes.

Our contribution?

To change that by factoring out those principles and processes to enable organisations to focus attention on the Things That Matter in their domain and in their specific situations.

The Things That Matter are pivotal because:

  • They are the “currency” of Value and they pragmatically embody purpose.
  • They inspire, engage, motivate and mobilise People as individuals and groups.
  • They promote and facilitate the natural emergence of cooperation and collaboration.
  • They harness Complexity in times of turbulence, uncertainty and accelerating change.

So, back to Tesla.

As far as I know, Elon Musk and his team haven’t read this website and don’t use terms like “Value Management“, “Things That Matter” or “Complexity-Aware”.

Perhaps they should…

But, terminology aside, what stands out from the podcasts is that Tesla absolutely embody and display everything we’re saying about being Complexity-Aware, People-Centred and Value-Led.

In this way, they may well be the first organisation to achieve and be driven by simplicity the other side of Complexity.

Read around some of the concepts in this article, listen to the podcasts and then judge for yourself: are Tesla the first company to fully embrace Value Management via the Things That Matter?

And are you ready to join them?