Systems thinking expands the range of choices available for solving a problem by broadening our thinking and helping us articulate problems in new and different ways.
Similar to the principles of holistic medicine, systems thinking is an approach to analysis that focuses on the way a system’s constituent parts interrelate and how systems work over time and within the context of larger systems. The systems thinking approach contrasts with traditional analysis, which studies systems by breaking them down into their separate elements.
Austrian biologist Ludwig von Bertanffy put systems thinking in motion. In the 1940s, von Bertanffy brought forth his theory that systems continually interacted with their environment. This gave way to the notion of open systems. In his view, open systems exhibited a tendency toward order (as opposed to closed systems). This view led to the creation of the International Society for the Systems Sciences (ISSS) in 1954, which gave birth to systems thinking as a discipline.
Systems Thinking Today
The evolution of systems thinking has spilled over into business. Systems thinking expands the range of choices available for solving a problem by broadening an organization’s thinking and helping articulate problems in new and different ways.
Systems thinking is also valuable for telling compelling stories that describe how a system works. For example, the practice of drawing causal loop diagrams forces a team to develop shared pictures, or stories, of a situation. The tools are effective vehicles for identifying, describing and communicating an understanding of systems, particularly in groups.
Benefits of applying a systems thinking strategy include:
- Plotting your company’s business system
- Identifying the complicated root causes of business difficulties
- Spotting the problems that cannot be solved by only process and technology changes
- Analyzing the effect of recommended improvement solutions
- Deriving more efficient organizational progresses
- Realizing the “hidden” causes of organizational resistance to change
- Delivering better direction and metrics for process redesign creativities
Additional beneficial outcomes for individuals in organizations that employ systems thinking, include:
- Creativity – Systems thinking activates new neurological development and enables dynamic, divergent thinking.
- 3-Dimensional Perspective – The world is not flat after all. Developing a holistic systems view expands perspective, which can help solve problems.
- Discovery Through Failure – With systems thinking there is a realization that no one person or department is to blame in a system where everybody and everything is connected. Understanding this can aid in helping turn apparent failure into exciting new discoveries.
Systems Thinking Training
Systems Thinking Training by Tonex is a two day course that covers the theory, rational, tools and techniques associated with systems thinking. Participants will be introduced to three separate states of systems thinking:
- Comprehending the system
- Mapping the system
- Taking action through the system
Who Should Attend
This course is especially designed for business leaders, executives, strategic leaders and mid-level and senior managers.
–Presenting highly customized learning solutions is what we do. For over 30 years Tonex has worked with organizations in improving their understanding and capabilities in topics often with new development, design, optimization, regulations and compliances that, frankly, can be difficult to comprehend.
–Ratings tabulated from student feedback post-course evaluations show an amazing 98 percent satisfaction score.
–Reasonably priced classes taught by the best trainers is the reason all kinds of organizations from Fortune 500 companies to government’s most important agencies return for updates in courses and hands-on workshops.
For more information, questions, comments, contact us.