Which color do you want to be?

Organizations, as people and society as a whole, have experienced a series of changes through history, creating new ways of management, new procedures and, in general, new ways of organization that have been a reflection of every historical milestone.
We will see one model to classify those organizations, as it will help us to explain the way Datio works or how people in here are trying to organize themselves. However, first of all, it is important to understand that this model applies not only to companies but to any kind of organization, if we understand an organization as a group of people with common interests or goals that needs a method to be organized.
We will describe the model created by ​Frederic Laloux (​Reinventing Organizations​), inspired by Ken Wilber’s (and others) developmental theory studies, which classifies the organizations by colours: red, amber, orange, green and, last but not less important, teal. Teal is our goal.

Red -The pack of wolves

They use power as a tool to align the team, using fear if necessary. Due to this, people are reactive and mainly focus on the short term. It is common to find this model in chaotic spaces  that need a new order.

Examples: organized crime, tribal militias

Amber – The Army

Order and command and a very strict hierarchy are the main characteristics of this formation. This provides them with a very stable environment with rules where the future looks pretty much like the past.

Examples: Military, Catholic Church


Orange – The Machine

They are aware of competitors and feel the need to improve their procedures. This is the reason why innovation and meritocracy are so relevant for this kind of organizations. They need goals to improve, to be competitive, so their management layer will define what the goal is and the rest will define how to reach it.

Examples: multinational companies


Green – The family

These organizations will keep a pyramidal structure but will work around motivation instead of following dictatorial rules. They look after the values that define them, generally based on equality, solidarity, tolerance and cooperation.

Example: organizations powered by culture


Teal – Living organism

Self-management, autonomy, trust and integrity are the basis of this kind of organization.  Individuals there make their own decisions and create the systems to improve their coordination and communication between them. They are constantly inspecting and evolving and searching for their potential realization. They also base their strategies and decisions on their perception of what the world needs.


These organizations encourage discussions to create new opportunities, what implies leaving the egos aside and focus on the wholeness and authenticity. They create a very energetic environment ready for creativity and freedom of speech.


Teal takes principles from holacracy, where the decisions are taken horizontally, and from sociocracy, which explore some cybernetics concepts such as: learning, cognition, adaptation, social control, emergence, convergence, communication, efficiency, efficacy, and connectivity.

Example: some lucky ones Datio shares values with.


Sara Diez Castellanos

When I was 17 I came to Madrid to study what was going to mark my path for the rest of my life: Computer Science and Engineering. After some years in Madrid and Paris, I moved to UK where I could develop myself personally and professionally. I worked there in several companies. It was then when I learnt to love the Agile Methodologies world and I must say, I am not an easy to convince person. I learnt them, hands on, practising them and I was amazed by their capacity to improve the quality of life of the teams as well as the deliverable products. Nowadays I live in Madrid and work here in Datio, trying -as much as I can- to extend my knowledge of Agile, within the IT world and in other sectors.

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