There’s a lot of noise and chaos out there. At times reality feels more like being King Lear in the middle of a cosmic storm than any kind of “normality”. (Acclaimed actress Glenda Jackson at the age of 80 is currently delivering a knock out performance as King Lear in London for those lucky enough to attend.)
What can we do? How can we be a positive influence?
It’s about doing things
It’s tempting at times to withdraw into our own bubble, exchange self-reinforcing opinions on Facebook, feel that things are unfair. Perhaps we are tempted to withdraw into our own thoughts. There is always space for enlightened contemplation. However, contemplation that is not then transformed into coherent deeds, into work, is just adding more chaos.
Systemic Thinking for Systemic Action
A huge part of our work at Intelligent Management has to do with taking the raw material of people’s current reality and transforming that into an actionable sequence of tasks that address what to change, what to change to and how to make the change happen (in fact we dedicate an entire chapter of our new book to change – see ‘Quality, Involvement, Flow: The Systemic Organization‘.
So we start with the intangible, with the ‘bitching and moaning’ and from there we derive, organically and systematically, a realistic action plan to make the right changes towards a desired future reality that overcomes what is unsatisfactory about reality today. We do this at the level of organizations and businesses. What we do engenders in people the ability to think systemically and creatively, in other words, see implications, negative and positive to pre-empt situations and direct them in the desired way.
It requires courage and imagination, the ability to imagine a better future instead of just putting up with the present. Courage, because instead of just passively taking what is happening, we decide to consciously design our own reality, as far as that is humanly possible. In other words, we taken on the responsibility of being co-creators for the good on this planet. (See Thinking Process Tools).
And something almost magical happens. We learn to connect the dots, to see possibilities that were otherwise unimaginable, and just by making this effort alone, we make a positive difference for ourselves and those around us.
Insist on doing what you know to be just and right
Just be being here, just by not giving in, but continuing to actively support values of cooperation and shared prosperity, we make a difference. Active support means things like:
- disseminate knowledge
- look for educational centres willing to share in educating citizens to civility and the common good
- get involved in community life whenever practicable to further the values of shared prosperity
- buy good books – including ours! see Intelligent Management books page
- donate to just causes
- make our voices heard with our elected representatives
Times have changed. Reality is dominated by complexity and new interdependencies that we ignore at our peril. We’re all in this together and we can be a positive influence, building healthy interdependencies. And if you know a company or a school or a university that could benefit form learning more about systemic thinking for a positive future, please let us know. There is no time to lose. Contact us here.
Sign up to our blog here and shift your thinking towards broader, systemic possibilities for yourself and your organization.
About the Author
Angela Montgomery Ph.D. is Partner and Co-founder of Intelligent Management, founded by Dr. Domenico Lepore. She is co-author with Dr. Domenico Lepore and Dr. Giovanni Siepe of ‘Quality, Involvement, Flow: The Systemic Organization’ from CRC Press, New York. Angela’s new business novel+ website The Human Constraint looks at how the Deming approach and the Theory of Constraints can create the organization of the future, based on collaboration, network and social innovation.