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  Sunday, August 31, 2003

  Change: patterns and leverage points

New pointers to ideas about change.

1. Mike Lee about Patterns for Introducing New Ideas into Organizations [via James Robertson]:

Over the weekend, while revisiting some citations on patterns, I landed on Mary Lynn Manns' and Linda Rising's Introducing New Ideas into Organizations, which is a web page of papers and resources on the patterns of practice they and many others used over several years to introduce the concept of patterns for software design in organizations. As you might imagine, any radically new way of thinking is a tough sell, and their collection of patterns (123 page PDF) for introducing patterns is really a comprehensive cookbook of tactics that can be used to sell any new technology-related ideas in an organization.

2. Dave Pollard summarises Places to Intervene in a System by Dana Meadows (in increasing order of power/difficulty):

  • Change the Measurements & Formulas
  • Change the Inventories and Flow Rates of Resources
  • Regulate Negative Impacts and Vicious Cycles
  • Sustain Virtous Cycles
  • Provide New Information
  • Change the Rules, or Who Makes and Enforces Them
  • Create a New System That Makes the Old One Obsolete
  • Change the Goals
  • Change the Mindset
  • Be open, yourself, to new ideas and ways of thinking

I liked both the summary and the original article that brought me back to my last year in university -  reading Forrester and thinking about world in terms of leverage points. The following two pieces are from the article by Dana Meadows:
Folks who do systems analysis have a great belief in "leverage points." These are places within a complex system (a corporation, an economy, a living body, a city, an ecosystem) where a small shift in one thing can produce big changes in everything.

[at the end] I don't think there are cheap tickets to system change. You have to work at it, whether that means rigorously analyzing a system or rigorously casting off paradigms. In the end, it seems that leverage has less to do with pushing levers than it does with disciplined thinking combined with strategically, profoundly, madly letting go.

More on: change 

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© Copyright 2002-2005 Lilia Efimova.

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