Seeing Systems: Unlocking the Mysteries of Organizational Life / Edition 2

Seeing Systems: Unlocking the Mysteries of Organizational Life / Edition 2

by Barry Oshry
     
 

ISBN-10: 1576754553

ISBN-13: 9781576754559

Pub. Date: 08/01/2007

Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.

"Seeing Systems" is the most accessible, penetrating book available on the dynamics of systems. In it, Oshry explains why so many efforts at creating more satisfying and productive systems end in disappointment, and proposes an entirely new framework for dealing with human behavior.  See more details below

Overview

"Seeing Systems" is the most accessible, penetrating book available on the dynamics of systems. In it, Oshry explains why so many efforts at creating more satisfying and productive systems end in disappointment, and proposes an entirely new framework for dealing with human behavior.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781576754559
Publisher:
Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
08/01/2007
Edition description:
Second Edition
Pages:
272
Sales rank:
473,530
Product dimensions:
7.40(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.84(d)

Table of Contents


Preface to the Second Edition     xi
Prologue: Overcoming System Blindness     xii
Seeing the Big Picture     1
When We Don't See the Big Picture     2
Pinball     2
The Manager of the Heart     4
The Mystery of the Swim     7
Seeing the Local Picture     9
"Stuff" Happens     10
From Spatial Blindness to Spatial Sight     14
Seeing Context     15
The "Truth" About Jack     20
Charlotte Is a Problem     22
Center Ring or Side Show?     25
Times Out of Time: Seeing the Whole     27
The TOOT Dilemma     31
From Temporal Blindness to Temporal Sight     33
The Invisible Histories of the Swims We Are In     34
History's Burst of Illumination     36
Bart and Barb: A System Evolves...Perfectly     38
"Anthropology" or Mick Gets Wiped Out     46
Applied Anthropology: Unraveling System History     58
Summary     59
Seeing Patterns of Relationship     61
Relational Blindness     63
What About All the Drama?     63
The Dance of Blind Reflex     64
FromRelational Blindness to Relational Sight     69
Three Patterns of Relationship     69
One Wakes, the Other Sleeps     71
The Top/Bottom Dance of Blind Reflex     72
It Takes Two to Tango...or Does It?     80
Let's Declare Bankruptcy: Transforming the Top/Bottom Dance     83
The Universal Civics Course     86
The End/Middle/End Dance of Blind Reflex     89
Daniel: Mutant in the Middle Space     97
Organizations in the Middle     100
The Provider/Customer Dance of Blind Reflex     101
Overcontrol or Transformation: The Mutant Customer     106
The Unfairly Judged Professor (and the Righteously Done-to Students)     108
Abused and Misused in the Space of Service     112
The Web of Relationships     117
How to Clean Sidewalks: It's a Matter of Being     120
Resistance or The Sound of the Old Dance Shaking     121
How We Can See the Dance     123
Summary     127
Seeing Patterns of Process     129
Process Blindness     131
Are You Sure You Have It All?     131
Turf Warfare, Alienation, and GroupThink: The Dance of Blind Reflex Continued     132
Relationship Breakdowns in a Nutshell     138
From Process Blindness to Process Sight     139
Territorial Tops: Stuck on Differentiation     139
The Success of a Business, the Failure of Its Partners     142
Learning from Experience: A Good Second Marriage     145
Help! No Recovering Top Groups Sighted     147
Advice for the Top Team     148
Alienated Middles: Stuck on Individuation     152
Alienation Among the Middles     153
Can Alienated Middles Become a Powerful System?     156
Mutant Middle Groups     158
How to Create Powerful Middle Teams     164
Bottom GroupThink: Stuck on Integration     166
Immigrant Martha Has a Breakdown     169
Where Is Everyone? A Mutant Bottom Group     176
Power Is Managing Differentiation     178
Creating Powerful Bottom Groups     181
The Politics of System Processes     183
Huddlers and Humanists...Enough With Consensus!     184
Amebocytes and Slugs: The Politics of Individuation and Integration     187
The Politics of Gender     189
Or Would You Rather Be an Earthworm? Societal Implications of Differentiation and Homogenization     192
Differentiation: Inquiry or Warfare?      193
An Ode to Homogenization     197
The Challenge of Robust Systems     198
The Dominants and the Others     199
Robust System Processes     205
The Dance of the Robust System: Ballet Notes     209
A Remarkable, If Somewhat Premature Epiphany     213
Summary     215
Seeing Uncertainty     217
The Emergence of Organizational Positions     219
Individuals in Uncertainty     220
Individuals Facing and Escaping from Organizational Uncertainty     220
A Mutant Moment in the Middle     225
Dancing in and out of the Tunnel of Limited Options     229
His Magic Consultant Card #2     235
Groups in Uncertainty     239
Groups Facing and Escaping from Uncertainty     239
How to Transform Oppositional Struggles into Multifaceted Flexible Teams     245
Facing and Escaping the Uncertainties of Existence     251
Not All Possibilities Are Possible     251
Coping with Uncertainty Through Mythos and Logos     253
Summary     257
The Next Act-Seeing More     259
Epilogue: A Continuing Revolution     261
Notes     267
About the Author     271

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