Systems Thinking and Complexity Science

Post 1:
Write a 300- to 500-word response to the following:

Compare and contrast what you’ve read this week about systems thinking and complexity science with your immediate working environment (as a Botiquehotelmanager). What’s different? What’s the same? Where are opportunities to be more like a systems thinker? Are there spaces where an industrial or mechanistic perspective is useful? Why or why not?

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*Include your own experience as well as two citations that align with or contradict your comments as sourced from peer-reviewed academic journals, industry publications, books, and/or other sources. Cite your sources using APA formatting.

If you found contradicting information to what your experience tells you, explain why you agree or disagree with the research.


Post 2:
Read others’ posts and respond in 250-300 words to at least one of your course colleagues. Why do you agree or disagree with their post? What in your experience or research supports your assertions?

Respond to this post by my classmate:

Anna- “Systems thinking helps to know and understand how things unfold over time. Systems thinking allows the ability to see the consequences of our actions and the web of inter-connectedness in any situation (Senge, n.d). Patterns can be seen observing data over time to help come up with solutions and how those decisions will impact the future. Everything is seen together instead of separately as they are interconnected. You must step back and look at all the parts and work together to accomplish what needs to be done. We have many different departments in my organization. To understand some of the processes, you must work with the other departments. Systems theorists take a holistic approach that focuses on the parts of a system and how they interrelate. This information can then help to determine the level of complexity (Goodman, 2018). Everything affects everything else, meaning that something cannot be studied without looking at the entire context. When one department is not as informed as another, a breakdown occurs, and the organization is not as efficient and effective as it could be. Opportunities to improve as a systems thinker include using systems thinking at home and at work. Systems thinking can also be used to gain insight and understanding into how others will see a system differently. Systems thinking is also a lifelong practice so consistently practicing systems thinking will expand our thinking and help us find new and different ways that are more informed to solve problems (Goodman, 2018).

In reading the article “Complexity Leadership Theory: Shifting leadership from the industrial age to the knowledge era”, complexity science introduces new ways to study regularities that are different from traditional science. Traditional science focuses on cause-effect relationships, whereas complexity science focuses on the assumption that complexity in the world comes from simple rules (Uhl-Bien et al., 2007). Complexity science focuses on one step at a time and understanding the current step. The complexity leadership theory enables learning, creativity, and adaptiveness. When there is interaction between people, emergent creativity and learning can occur (Uhl-Bien et al., 2007). Complexity is a science of mechanisms, interacting parts. A mechanistic perspective could be useful in examining the individuals in the departments and how they come together and interact.


Goodman, M. (2018). Systems thinking: What, why, when, where, and how? Systems Thinker. Retrieved from

Senge, P. (n.d.) What is Systems Thinking? [Video]. YouTube.

Uhl-Bien, M. Marion, R. & Mckelvey, B. (2007). Complexity Leadership Theory: Shifting leadership from the industrial age to the knowledge era. The Leadership Quarterly 18(4) 298-318.″
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