Category: Articles

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The Promise of Systems Thinking for Shifting Fundamental Dynamics

People in Guatemala—smart people—were working harder, hiring brighter people, raising more money, doing better projects, and getting improved results. And yet, what they sought …

The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook: A Guide to the Learning Organization

Jorge Valchez is an organizational development consultant at International Chocolate, Inc., a (fictional) confectionery company. A few years ago, he picked up a copy …

Creating Business Results Through Team Learning

As of 1993, Sigma Tech (a fictional name) was one of the most successful small corporations in the U.S. The company’s business was both …

Superstitious Learning

The drive toward improvement has become a way of life in corporations today. Total Quality Management, Business Process Reengineering, and other improvement techniques have …

Introducing Systems Thinking into Your Organization

So you’ve read The Fifth Discipline, attended the Pegasus “Systems Thinking in Action” Conference, bought simulation software, and created your first computer models. You’re …

Step-By-Step Stocks and Flows: Improving the Rigor of Your Thinking

The systems thinking community has always considered stock and flow diagrams to be important tools, and recognition of their key place in the …

Everyone’s Problem to Solve: Systems Thinking Cross-Functionally

Several years ago, I was approached by a California-based software firm focused on electronic design automation. Their software enabled hardware engineers to efficiently design …

The Blind Men and the Elephant

The parable of the blind men and the elephant illustrates how our individual perceptions (what Peter Senge calls our “mental models”) can lead to …

Revitalizing the Schools: A Systems Thinking Approach

Fortune magazine recently labeled the U.S. school system “our most endangered institution,” highlighting a growing national concern about the quality of education in America. Steadily …

Conversation as a Core Business Process

Take a moment to put on a new set of glasses. Change your perspective. Consider, for a moment, that the most widespread and pervasive …