Adapt Patterns To Context

Adapt and evolve S3 patterns to suit your specific context.

Adopt The Seven Principles

Align collaboration with the Seven Principles.

Agree On Values

Intentionally evolve the culture in your organization.

Align Flow

In support of continuous flow of value, move decision-making close to where value is created, and align the flow of information accordingly.

Artful Participation

Commit to doing your best to act and interact in ways that enable effective collaboration.

Ask For Help

A simple protocol for learning, skill sharing, and building connections, with respect for people's agency.


A backlog (to-do-list) is a list of (often prioritized) uncompleted work items (deliverables), or (drivers) that need to be addressed.

Be The Change

Lead by example.

Breaking Agreements

Break agreements when you are certain the benefit for the organization outweighs the cost of waiting to amend that agreement first, and take responsibility for any consequences.


Secure S3 principles and patterns in your bylaws as needed to protect legal integrity and **organizational culture

Check In

Help people to become aware of themselves and others, and to focus, be present and engage.


A circle is a self-governing and semi-autonomous team of equivalent people who collaborate to account for a domain.

Clarify Intended Outcome

Be explicit about the expected results of agreements, activities, projects and strategies.

Clarify and Develop Domains

Explicitly clarify, and then regularly evaluate and develop a domain's design based on learning, to enable those with responsibility for the domain to account for it as effectively as possible.

Clarify and Develop Strategy

A strategy is a high level approach for how people will create value to successfully account for a domain.

Co-Create Proposals

Bring people together to co-create proposals in response to organizational drivers: tap collective intelligence, build sense of ownership and increase engagement and accountability.

Consent Decision-Making

A (facilitated) group process for decision-making: invite objections, and consider information and knowledge revealed to further evolve proposals or existing agreements.

Continuous Improvement Of Work Process

Reveal drivers and establish a metrics-based pull-system for organizational change through continuously improving and refining the work process.

Contract For Successful Collaboration

Support successful collaboration from the start and build trust between parties by co-creating mutually beneficial and legally robust contracts.

Coordination Meeting

Meet on a regular basis (usually weekly) for reporting on and coordinating work across domains.


A person fulfilling the role of a coordinator is accountable for coordinating a domain's operations and is **selected for a limited term.

Create a Pull-System For Organizational Change

Create an environment that invites and enables members of the organization to drive change.

Daily Standup

Meet daily to organize work, facilitate learning and improve your productivity and effectiveness.

Delegate Circle

Delegate making governance decisions affecting multiple domains to representatives selected by those domains.

Delegate Influence

Distribute the power to influence, to enable people to decide and act for themselves within defined constraints.

Describe Deliverables

Clearly describe any deliverables related to an agreement to support shared understanding of expectations.

Describe Organizational Drivers

Describe organizational drivers to understand, communicate and remember them.

Development Plan

A plan for how to develop more effective ways of accounting for a domain, agreed between delegator and delegatee.

Double Linking

Enable the two-way flow of information and influence between two teams.

Double-Linked Hierarchy

Delegate all authority for making governance decisions to self-governing circles, double-linked across all levels of the hierarchy, to transition from an traditional hierarchy towards a structure more suitable for tapping collective intelligence, ensuring equivalence and building engagement.

Driver Mapping

A workshop format for large groups to co-create and organize themselves in response to a complex situation of significant scope and scale.

Evaluate And Evolve Agreements

Continuously evolve the body of agreements, and eliminate waste.

Evaluate Meetings

Take time for learning at the end of each meeting or workshop.

Evaluation Criteria

Develop well-defined evaluation criteria to determine if acting on an agreement had the desired effect.

Facilitate Meetings

Choose someone to facilitate a meeting to help the group maintain focus, keep the meeting on track and draw out the participant's creativity and wisdom.

Fractal Organization

Multiple constituents (organizations or projects) with a common (or similar) primary driver and structure can share learning across functional domains, align action and make high level governance decisions (e.g. overall strategy).

Governance Backlog

A governance backlog is a visible, prioritized list of items (drivers) that are related to governing a domain and require attention.

Governance Facilitator

Select someone to facilitate governance meetings.

Governance Meeting

Teams meet at regular intervals to decide what to do to achieve objectives, and to set constraints on how and when things will be done.

Helping Team

Bring together a team of equivalent people with the mandate to execute on a specific set of requirements defined by a delegator.

Invite Change

Clarify the reason for change and invite people to participate.

Involve Those Affected

Involve people in making decisions that affect them, to maintain equivalence and accountability, and to increase the amount of information available on the subject.

Limit Work in Progress

Limit the number of work items in any stage of your work process.


Enable the flow of information and influence between two teams.


Maintain a coherent and accessible system that stores all information required for collaboration.

Logbook Keeper

Select a member of your team to be specifically accountable for keeping up to date records of all information the team requires.

Meeting Host

Select someone to take responsibility for the preparation and follow-up of meetings, workshops or other events.

Navigate via Tension

Pay attention to tension you experience in relation to the organization, investigate the cause and pass on any organizational drivers you discover to the people accountable for the appropriate domain.

Open Space For Change

Invite everyone to create and run experiments for evolving the organization.

Open Systems

Intentionally communicate with and learn from others outside of your system.

Open Team

Intentionally account for a domain by invitation rather than assignment, and request that those invited contribute when they can.

Peach Organization

Deliver value in complex and competitive environments through decentralization (of resources and influence) and direct interaction between those creating value and the customers they serve.

Peer Feedback

Invite any member of your organization to give you some constructive feedback on your performance in a role or in a team, about your general participation and contribution, or about any other area you wish to develop.

Peer Review

Support each other to learn and grow in the roles and teams you serve in.

Planning And Review Meetings

People meet at regular intervals (1-4 weeks) in timeboxed meetings to plan and review work.

Prepare For Meetings

Prepare in advance to make meetings more effective.

Prioritize Backlogs

Order all uncompleted work items with the most important items first, then pull work items from the top whenever there is new capacity.

Proposal Forming

A (facilitated) group process for co-creating a response to a driver.

Pull-System For Work

People pull in new work items when they have capacity (instead of having work pushed or assigned to them).

Reasoned Decision-Making

Engage in productive dialogue by investigating different perspectives and the knowledge of participants, to reach agreement on what is considered viable, relevant, valid or empirically true.

Record Agreements

Record the details of agreements you make, so you can recall them later, evaluate the outcome and evolve the agreement over time.


Select a team member to participate in the governance decision-making of another team to enable the flow of information and influence.

Resolve Objections

Use the information revealed by an objection to identify ways to evolve proposals, agreements and actions to a good-enough state.

Respond to Organizational Drivers

Clarify organizational drivers (i.e. what's happening and what's needed in relation to the organization), and respond as required.


Dedicate time to reflect on past experience, learn, and decide how to improve work process.


Delegate responsibility for a domain to individuals.

Role Selection

A group process for selecting a person for a role on the strength of the reason.


In a group meeting, go around the circle giving everyone the chance to speak in turn.

Service Circle

Outsource services required by two or more domains.

Service Organization

Multi-stakeholder collaboration and alignment towards a shared driver (or objective).

Support Role

Apply the role pattern to external contractors.

Test Arguments Qualify as Objections

Utilize your limited time and resources wisely by testing if arguments qualify as objections and only acting on those that do.

Timebox Activities

Set a time constraint to stay focused, bring consciousness to the time you have and how you use it.

Transparent Salary

Create a fair salary formula and make it transparent.

Visualize Work

Maintain a system that allows all stakeholders to review the state of all work items currently pending, in progress or complete.