The fifth Discipline Systems Thinking ‡ AASHNI WADHWA - 3113 ABHISHEK BHIDE - 3114 ADITI ARORA - 3115 ANAND TAPADIA - 3116 ANIRBAN KUNDU - 3117 ‡ ‡ ‡ ‡ lEARNING ORGANISATIONS : a dEFINITION Humans are taught right from infancy to parse information into components and to analyse it in its fragmented form. We pay dearly for this habit : we no longer see the consequence of our actions; we fail to see the intrinsic value attached to our actions. This task is futile : like re-assembling a broken mirror shard by shard to view our reflection , it is hard and we give up because we fail to see how little slivers and pieces fit in. Thus, if and when we abandon this approach, we can evolve to become Learning Organisations. A Learning Organisation is one where people continually expand their ability and capacity to learn to create the results they desire, where innovative patterns of thinking are nurtured, collective aspirations are set free and people are continually learning how to learn together. ³ Learningfull ³ organisations are the need of the hour with the world becoming more interconnected and businesses becoming more complex and dynamic. The onus of being the driving force and motivation can no longer rest on the shoulders of a particular individual like the old days where a certain Gates or a Ford were the fuel of an organisations excellence. Organisations which will be the stalwarts of the future will be the one¶s that are in a constant state of learning flux and which learn how to harness people¶s commitment and capacity to learn at all levels in the organiations. Team work in organisations that helps an organisation overcome adverse situations is often heaped with praise. However it is forgotten that the team did not start out as a winning, successful team. The team learned how to come together and work as a cohesive unit to achieve their success. Learning Organisations are required in this day and age because we are now at the stage where we have understanding of the latent potential of such organisations. Through learning organisations we can work to provide personal benefit to employees whilst carrying along the environment and other variables that are affected by the organisations activities to maintain a balance state of being in the organisations and it environment. The Five Discipline Disciplines ‡ 1. 2. 3. 4. "Personal mastery´ is a discipline of continually clarifying and deepening our personal vision, of focusing our energies, of developing patience, and of seeing reality objectively." "Mental modelsµ are deeply ingrained assumptions, generalizations, or even pictures of images that influence how we understand the world and how we take action." "Building shared visionµ a practice of unearthing shared pictures of the future that foster genuine commitment and enrollment rather than compliance." "Team learningµ starts with dialogue, the capacity of members of a team to suspend assumptions and enter into genuine thinking together." Systems thinking - The Fifth Discipline that integrates the other 4. What is a system ? ³a regularly interacting or interdependent group of items forming a unified whole.´ The key words in this definition are ³interdependent´ and ³unified whole.´ Systems can range from very simple (filling a glass of water) to extremely complex (climate change) and are constantly working to maintain a level of stability. Organizational systems are more complex than this. There are two distinct sections of an organizational system, the internal system and the external system. The internal system consists of a variety of parts, including the products or services produced, personnel, the materials and tools used to create products or services, the relationships that people have with each other ± this list could be endless. The external system is everything outside the organization that influences it: competitors, the economy, the condition of the financial industry, the environment, regulations, the political landscape, and the community, to name a few. Both the internal and external systems are not only interacting within themselves but are also interacting with each other. Observing and understanding these interactions is the crux of systems The fifth discipline Discipline : A developmental for acquiring certain skills or competencies. Constant practice can help you hone these skills. It is a constant and never ending process. Systems Thinking is known as the Fifth Discipline because it represents the synergy of the other disciplines. It is imperative that all the disciplines develop as an ensemble. Just as a system is put into application as a sum total of all its components, Systems Thinking is the application of the sum total of the other disciplines. Although it is harder to apply a multiple of disciplines simultaneously in contrast to one discipline at a time, the fruits it bears are manifold. Systems Thinking is the discipline that integrates the disciplines, fusing them into a coherent body of theory and practice. It keeps them from being separate corporate fads and buzz words that thrown around with any real conviction. The discipline of systems thinking evolved from the field of systems dynamics and is both a set of tools and a new way of thinking involving new language. In systems thinking, we look at the whole system rather than trying to break it down into its individual parts; that is, we become expansive in our thinking rather than reductive. By looking at the whole, we are more capable of seeing interrelationships and patterns over time. We also begin to understand that the presenting problem may be symptomatic of deeper issues within the system, and so we start looking for the root causes. In doing so, we move away from assigning blame and focus on the desired outcomes. The essential elements required for systems thinking in an organisation are : Shared Vision : This fosters a commitment to a long term goal. Mental Models : To focus on the openness needed to diagnose mistakes in the present way of viewing the world. Team Learning : Helps develops the skills required for people to learn together and look at problems in the larger scale of things. Personal Mastery : To motivate us to know our actions continually affect the world. Metanoia : a shift of mind At the heart of System Thinking is Metanoia. This represents a paradigm shift from seeing ourselves as separate from the world to connected to the world, from seeing problems as caused by someone or something ³ out there ³ to seeing how our actions create the problems we experience. A learning organisation is the epicentre of Metanoia because people are constantly discovering how they create their reality and how their actions affect the world around them. system thinking in ORGANIZATIONS ‡Events : Begin the practice of systems thinking by telling the story of the current situation. It is ‡important to hear as many perspectives as possible. However, don¶t jump to solutions ‡immediately. It may be necessary to provide a quick fix but do so with the understanding that it is a stopgap measure that is not designed for long-term solutions. Meanwhile, explore the nature ‡of the event or problem in greater detail. Patterns of behavior: Track the situation over a period of time. Look for patterns and trends that go below the surface. Go back in history, if you¶ve got the data. Those patterns are key indictors for the system. Mental models: Create new mental models to introduce change into the system. Be Systemic structure: Look for interrelationships in the patterns and trends you¶ve discovered. Look for balancing and reinforcing feedback and identify delays in the system. Uncover the mental models that are driving these patterns. patient ± there will be delays, and things may get worse before they get better. Track and evaluate the effects of the changes. Determine if there are unintended consequences and decide what needs tweaking. System Thinking ADVANTAGES ‡ Develop new ways of looking at old problems. ‡ Integrate new information more easily. ‡ See interrelationships and cause and effect more clearly. ‡ Develop patience with implementing change and tolerating delays. ‡ Step away from the blame game toward shared responsibility. ‡ See the whole rather than the parts. LEARNING DISABILITIES IN AN ORGANISATION ³ I AM MY POSITION ´ ³ THE ENEMY IS OUT THERE ³ ³ THE ILLUSION OF TAKING CHARGE ´ ³ THE FIXATION ON EVENTS ³ ³ THE PARABLE OF THE BOILED FROG ³ ³ THE DELUSION OF LEARNING FROM EXPERIENCE ³ ³MYTH OF THE MANAGEMENT TEAM´ sYSTEMS THINKING : THE BEER GAME Lessons from the Beer Game relating to Systems Thinking The structure of a system influences behavior. Systems cause their own problems, not external forces or individual errors. Human systems include the way in which people make decisions. People tend to focus on their own decisions and ignore how these decisions affect others. Lessons Related to the Learning Disabilities People do not understand how their actions affect others. So they tend to blame each other for problems. Becoming proactive causes more problems. The problems build gradually, so people don't realize there is a problem until its too late. People don't learn from their experience because the effects of their actions occur somewhere else in the system. Thank you
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