The whole and its parts

The whole & its parts

There are no broken systems

At first sight, it might sound absurd to say that there are no broken systems. However, when taking a closer look it becomes clear, that any system that serves a purpose and delivers an outcome must be considered a working system.

Whenever a system appears to be broken, it is the mismatch between expectations and outcome that invites us to call it broken.

Such mismatches occur constantly. It helps to pay attention to them as they can be great indicators of a necessary change.

But to be able to determine if a change is necessary as well as if a change is possible, it is important to ask oneself who is benefiting from the way the system works and how they are benefiting.

The first reason to ask these questions is to verify if the system serves a wanted purpose.

The second reason to ask these questions is to learn who will be disappointed if the system changes and who will struggle to accept changing the system.

People often assume that change is desirable as it changes things for the better. However, this is rarely the case for everyone.

And whenever a given system is aligned with the larger system’s purpose there are good reasons to stick to the status quo. In the latter case, it isn’t the system that needs to change, it is how its story is conveyed.

Asking these questions not only allows to assess any necessary change, but it also allows to assess how challenging it will be to make the change happen.




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