What is System Dynamics?

System dynamics is concerned with the inclusion of all parts and observing how these parts interrelate when they come together. Having an understanding of these relationships can give insights into why a system functions as it does now and how it could function  more effectively. By raising awareness, unraveling entanglements and working with patterns, energy can be invigorated and systems move more freely towards their destination. 

What are Systems?

Systems are a number of elements in constant relationship with one another. Human systems are “living” so unlike more technical systems, a change in one element affects the whole.  For example families, a class at a school, a department in an organization, a management team, or a country or region are all systems that are in constant relationship to one another.

Why do Patterns form within Systems?

Patterns form within systems to ensure stability and predictability. They represent the experiences in groups where people repeatedly take certain positions or seem to follow an unstated rule.  Patterns in themselves are neutral. Some create energy and growth and some create blockages and stagnation, all are working for the whole, to keep the system alive.

How does this apply to Professional life? 

Organisations  and businesses are living systems made up of dynamic people, all with their own history and aspirations. Each individual’s unique past and the organisations historical events play a significant role in shaping its culture and influencing  the collective consciousness in the company.

 

The phenomenological approach to system dynamics in workplaces  involves neutral observation without judgement. This inclusive quality that acknowledges that everything in a system has a place, can help reveal the hidden patterns operating below the surface as it works at three levels;

 

The Individual;  what you want and plan

The Collective;  what the system wants and orchestrates (often without peoples knowledge)

Evolutionary Power;  what evolutionary forces of a society bring towards you (whether you want it or not)

 

If the leaders of organisations and the individuals within them are aware of these levels and how they interrelate, they can place themselves and the organisation in an optimum position for success and growth.