How to Make Systems Thinking a More Natural Act – Catarina von Maydell on LinkedIn

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Systems thinking+ needs to be like entrepreneurial effectuation that includes linear approaches as well as exploratory/innovation approaches.
Systems thinking+ needs to be like entrepreneurial effectuation that includes linear approaches as well as exploratory/innovation approaches.

How to Make Systems Thinking a More Natural Act

Catarina von Maydell

Catarina von Maydell

Helping leaders & teams create strategic, sustainable innovation & change.
14 articles 

To address the many difficult challenges we face from local to organizational to global levels, we need to approach the challenges differently. This includes leveraging systems thinking, design thinking, complexity thinking, agile approaches, etc, etc. However, this “deep thinking” is not easy, and it is currently not a natural process. But we can make it easier, and we can make it something that is much more natural to business people and other people who need to solve complex problems.

This article recaps the ST-TO+ presentation and the presentation that triggered it, and then provides insights that might help us understand how we can make systems thinking+ a more ‘natural act’.

To understand “Why Deep Thinking is Not a Natural Act”, Srikanth Ramanujam used experiential exercises and a range of resources at Systems Thinking+ Toronto to show some different ways people think and how automatic cognitive processes (Daniel Kahneman’s fast thinking) can interfere with the deeper, considered, slower thinking. The presentation concluded with a discussion of:

  1. How we can leverage the processes of scientific process and iterative systems thinking steps (including mapping) to think more deeply.
  2. How the Cynefin model can help us recognize the type of thinking we probably need to do based on the situation. Cynefin recognizes situations can be:
  • ordered (situations are simple or complicated; best or good practices can address challenges), or
  •  unordered (situations are complex or chaotic; these situations require much more observation, exploration, experimentation and learn-as-you-go).

Srikanth’s presentation was triggered by Professor Ricardo Valerdi’s “Why/When Systems Thinking is Not a Natural Act” video and academic paperValerdi writes ST is not a natural act because

our systems “favor mechanisms tuned to dealing with immediate surface features of challenges.”

Our education and business systems’ “mechanistic/reductionist” approaches to decision-making and acting “inhibit” the development of the cognitive processes necessary for ST.

continues and with comments in source: How to Make Systems Thinking a More Natural Act | LinkedIn