Monday, December 3, 2018

Systems Thinking for Real Solutions and Desirable Outcomes

        The effects of multidirectional mind-bending change, social fragmentation, and disjointed human communication are continually destabilizing the foundations of the structures of several of America’s organizational institutions.  Systems thinking emerges as a clear and effective alternative method to the current exhaustive linear reductionist quantitative analysis used to debate our social and organizational problems.
        Today, more than ever, systems thinking is needed—because we are overwhelmed by volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity (VUCA conditions), which can easily undermine confidence and responsibility.  A Systems thinking approach can move us beyond debate and into problem-solving; creating the solutions that produce the desired outcomes we need.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Systems Thinking and How it Affects Your Life

Systems Thinking born out of Biology —with a focus on the interconnection, interrelation, and interdependence of the elements that form an integrated unified whole (holistic) that achieves a purpose or function.  Systems Thinking puts a new emphasis on complexity, networks, and patterns of organization in living systems. It involves a new kind of thinking—taking a holistic view of our biologically, cognitive sociological, and ecological systems and how they affect our everyday lives.

Ø The elements/components of any system may vary—there’re not necessarily tangible, they can be intangible (cultural traits, educational prowess, a sense of community pride, etc.) depending upon the system, whether it be biological, sociological, ecological, or cognitive

Ø All Systems maintain organized networks that take on patterns that produce their own holistic structural and behavioral properties that have a purpose or function; structure determines what behaviors are latent within the system

Ø The whole is greater than the sum of its parts!  Systems Thinking requires a paradigm shift in your thinking—from seeing individual objects or parts to recognizing the patterns in the network of relationships

Monday, October 8, 2018

The Paradox of Racialism

Racialism: A Broken, Dysfunctional, and Failing System

When we juxtapose the system of racialism with the dynamics of an optimal and highly functional social system, we can begin to understand its brokenness, dysfunctionality, and failing properties.  The characteristics of Racialism--the matter (human beings) and the energy sources (mental models, outdated language, ignorance, and social paradigms) are what keep this system alive.  Also, we must consider the philosophical, social, economic, biological, ecological, ethical, and spiritual domains that are impacted by this system.  

Then, we can begin to understand racialism’s systemic structure/nature.  In reference to the optimal efficiency of a system, it becomes quite clear that we could never achieve this within the system of racialism. It is divisive by its very structure/nature and creates boundaries and barriers that only allow for the optimization of each element (based on different races) separately, but not as a whole society.  Clearly, its trajectory—leading to a future filled with even more volatility-vulnerability, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity (VUCA) conditions, which only exacerbate the inefficiencies and brokenness of the system. 

The Paradox of Racialism

          It is precisely because the system creates values and unfair advantages for certain individuals and groups with a particular set of interests and creates a narrow range of values and opportunities for others that causes an imbalance within the system. The result – major inefficiencies in the methods and processes in which we use to create values and equal opportunities for society as a whole (holistically). This imbalance in the system leads to inevitable undesirable outcomes (injustice, inequality, and disparities in the distribution of goods, services, resources, and opportunities for advancement across all strata and disciplines); unintended consequences (conflict and the wrong line of conduct); and ultimately a failure (a binary disjunctive society).

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Solutions and Outcomes from the Past...

Some of our antiquated socio-economic and socio-political solutions and outcomes from the past—have yielded unintended consequences and have become 21st-century societal problems!

Sunday, July 22, 2018

The Deconstruction of the Racialism Phenomenon: A Systems Thinking Approach

A nuanced paradigm shift in the fundamental mechanics of our linguistics and communication process that is germane to the systemic nature of the social construction of a raced society.  Racialism—an appellation that identifies the overarching systemic structure of the social organization and social differentiation of a society based on artificial signifiers (characteristics/features of the physical anatomy and bloodlines), commonly referred to as race.
Systems Thinking – A scientific approach that looks at organizational and societal structures that observes behaviors through a lens that focuses on a holistic view, interconnection, interdependence, context (purpose/function), and root causes & conditions; systems thinking includes the mastery of a specific language and a unique set of tools/techniques that enhances one’s ability to map, critique, and synthesize information.
Deconstruction - Seems to center around the idea that language and meaning are often inadequate in trying to convey the message or idea a communicator is trying to express.  Since the confusion stems from the language and not the object then one should break down or deconstruct the language to see if we can better understand where the confusion stems.” – Derrida, Jacques
The ultimate aim of the deconstruction process of the racialism phenomenon is to bring awareness and a lucid understanding of how our language (personal lexicon) may influence behavior and unwittingly perpetuate the dissonance and bifurcation that we strive to overcome. This process will also encourage life-long-learning, a paradigm shift, and the reframing of one's agency (a process by which we critically evaluate and choose our course of action) to help create meaningful and sustainable solutions and outcomes (a just, egalitarian, and equitable society).   
Philosophy – Racialism is a broken, dysfunctional, and perpetually failing system that has provided no real concrete benefit to our society; nothing that we do seems to ameliorate this phenomenon.  It is the cognitive imprisonment that has held the American society in systemic ethnic and color-bias captivity since the 17th century.  Racialism cannot be understood in a vacuum or in isolation—it is a part of a complex interconnected web and systemic by its very nature.  We continually create the socio-ecosystem and the complex conditions for the system of racialism to survive!
Our minds are frequently at work trying to make sense of our world; how we communicate makes a difference and learning to speak the language of inclusion is quintessential to our sustainability as a society.   
          An Authentic Call to Action – Moving beyond rhetoric and debate – Requires metanoia (a shift of mind).  Moving from placing blame, condemnation, and guilt – to learning and understanding – to recognizing the archetypes and behavioral patterns that are intrinsic to the structure of the system.  Facilitating an inclusive and thought-provoking discourse that drives self-reflection to better define our personal agency, seeks viable alternatives, and fosters vision.  Becoming an empowered agent for change--developing a flexible growth mindset, adaptable toolset, and proficient skillsets to create the necessary solutions that produce the desired outcomes is the challenge before us.  We must construct an accessible pathway that leads to respect, collaboration, and rational discourse.  Always moving towards a growth mindset through continuous learning.

Paul E Jones, Social Theorist
CLO - Bridging The Divide Initiative