“… the third level of explanation, the ‘structural’ explanation, is the least common and most powerful. It focuses on answering the question, “What causes the patterns of behavior?” – Peter Senge
Dear Steve Denning,
You write that “It is the responsibility of directors to ensure that these changes happen and that firms pursue the right goal. If directors were to lead that charge, force the abandonment of the shareholder value theory in their firms and refocus their organizations on the right corporate goal, they would certainly deserve a raise. That however would take considerable courage and would involve very different behavior from what we are seeing today.” To have such different behavior, Shouldn't those directors behave by fully comprehending such “structural explanations”?
In the next two paragraphs is what I wrote on the blog post Why the Eurozone leaders must change their common sense first.
In the “more than 1 million copies in print,” of the “revised and updated with 100 new pages,” in the 2006 book in front of me, “The Fifth Discipline: the art & practice of the Learning Organization,” written by Peter Senge, it says that “The system perspective shows that there are multiple levels of explanations in any complex situation… In some sense, all are equally ‘true.’ But their usefulness is quite different.” I guess that high quality journalism is not just about “event explanations,” which Senge says “are the most common in contemporary culture, and that’s exactly why reactive management prevails.”
Instead, he says that “Pattern of behavior explanations focus on seeing longer term trends and assessing their implications,” which seem to fit with today’s good journalism.
Then he adds what the introductory quote says.
Happy New Year!!!
José Antonio Vanderhorst Silverio, Ph.D.
Consulting Engineer on Systems Architecting
Steve Denning Steve Denning, Contributor
Dear Jose (A Vanderhorst)
Thanks for your insightful comment with which I agree. We need to get to a system-level understanding of the problem, not just an event-type explanation.