Are you overwhelmed by complexity? If so, you are not alone. Senge notes that people are now able to “create far more information that anyone can absorb,” and he continues to say that the “scale of complexity is without precedent” (2006, p. 69). This “detail” complexity can make managing a business and making informed decisions particularly difficult.
As you review Senge’s Chapter 5, “A Shift of Mind,” consider his descriptions of detail complexity and dynamic complexity. Because organizations do not operate in a vacuum, they are invariably dealing with dynamic complexity. A company that attracts new customers with an innovative product will likely find itself facing many competitors with a similar offering. The market changes as a result of the new product, and the competitive response further changes the market. These shifting dynamics constitute the world in which most managers operate.
Consider organizations where you have worked or with which you are familiar. The organization could be a business, non-profit, or a government agency. Think about examples of detail complexity and dynamic complexity at these organizations.