Reflecting on systems

As part of my masters program in Leadership and Change, I’m currently taking a course about systems, organizational structure, and culture. I’m very interested in the topic because I’ve worked at places with great culture and not so great culture.

I think of culture as a cloud, it hangs over everyone and if you try to catch it, the cloud moves just out of reach. You can’t grab it and force it to your will but with creative management, you can use the wind to push it in the direction you want to go. But how do you start to shape culture?

Before shaping a company’s culture, you need to understand the system that contains it. As the first assignment, I reflected on the systems I am a part of. There are obvious ones like work, school, the class, but the one I pointed out as the most important to me right now is my personal relationship with my partner. I’m a very big believer in manifesting and the power of positive thoughts. Our relationship microsystem is a living lab for the ways in which positive inputs lead to positive emergence. Translated to a larger scale, it helps me to understand that the positive inputs I feed into my work system are producing positive effects, even if I can’t pinpoint them. Just like a stone thrown into a pond, my positive inputs and thoughts are radiating out and affecting my coworkers and workplace in small ways while not altering the makeup of the pond or who is swimming in it.

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