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Change Management – Sustems Paterns

Change Management – Sustems Paterns

BUS4802 Change Management – Systems Patterns

Changes do occur in systems and in organisation on daily basis. It is always expected that
during change, current status of things will not be the same. These changes can therefore be well
explained and understood through these system archetypes.

System archetypes are behavior patterns exhibited in systems. These archetypes are
behaviors patterns, well-expressed using circles of causality hence they resemble in their
structures (Sterman, 2000). Therefore, it is important to identify the system archetype as well
find a leverage to ensure that changes in a system is efficient.
Casual loop diagram helps to explain behaviors of a system, illustrating a collection of
connected nodes as well as the feedback loops that exists courtesy of the connections. One or
more nodes in the diagram represent the symptoms of the problems being experienced (Sterman,
2000). The other nodes are known as casual chains implying that they are the ones that cause the
It is also important to understand how the casual lops work. The casual loop consists of
arrows, nodes and feedback loops. Nodes represent various aspects such as truth ratings, false
attack, detected deceptions, and false promises among others. A node as well has a value and a
name as it represents something in the real world. The diagram has two types of arrows that
indicate how they influence each other. One of them is solid arrow also known as direct
relationship, as it indicates the point where node A value varies directly with the value of another
node –B. The second arrow is dashed and it indicates an inverse relationship and it indicates
instances where the value of A increases while the value of B decrease or goes down (Sterman,
2000).. Balancing and reinforcing loops are two types of feedback loops. In a balancing
feedback, loop changes happen in opposite directions, and this causes the loop to balance its
behaviors as it endeavors to achieve specific goal. In this balancing loop, there is interaction of
the current and desired state that leads to a gap. If the gap is greater, the motivation/pressure to
come up with a solution is higher. The solution or action propels the current state towards that
states expected and in the process, the gap diminishes. In case the state is changed to the

expected one, this gap is filled as the goal is attained. On the other hand, reinforcing feedback
loop is where a change in one node moves or oscillates around the loop to trigger a change at the
same node in the same direction. These changes may cause the loop to either decline or grow.
These predictable patterns are valuable in organizations, especially when it comes to
management of problems. They are also used to improve team conversation as people or team
members can be able to reach an agreement on various issues or when deliberating on issues that
they hold varied opinions. The gap is reduced through balancing of feedback loop.
The loops are also valuable in helping teams to counterintuitive dynamics as they enable
them to express their opinions and to reach compromises on some issues. Teams have an
opportunity to reflect back on their actions and make amendments or correction that ensures that
the team remains productive.
Archetype patterns as well have the capability of improving processes in an organisation.
They provide a framework or a guideline of how an entity can achieve its objectives. The
organization is able to attain their desired goals by reflecting on the current situation and taking
the right action to achieve their set goals. Therefore, it contributes to efficiency in an
organization. An example of the loophole diagram is the casual loop diagram. The manager sets
desired targets every year and takes decisive actions to ensure their achievement. A good
example at my place of work is where the manger managed to achieve a desired target in terms
of sales volume by improving the quality of products and recruiting qualified and professional
people in the organization.
This topic is therefore important and can help entities to achieve their goals if they
understand how to adopt systems archetypes. Nevertheless, the three questions are? How can
the archetypes be useful in environmental sustainability? What skills and knowledge should

individual posses to understand and adopt these archetypes in their organization? What are the
challenges or limitation of these archetypes in management/?


Sterman, J. (2000). Business Dynamics: Systems Thinking and Modeling for a Complex World.
McGraw Hill/Irwin.

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