15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Good, but perhaps too ambitious...?,
This review is from: The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization: First edition (Century business) (Paperback)
System thinking is an interesting concept. Some of the background theory draws upon feedback control theory. The author acknowledges this but still claims the novelty/originality of the approach, which is probably true in the field of management. However, system thinking should be taken with a great pinch of salt, as it is difficult to reconduct many of the intricacies of real life to series of feedback loops. Real life is largely "fuzzy" in nature - chaos theory, stochastic processes are examples of powerful approaches that try to deal with the enormous complexity of the real world phenomena, including macro/micro economics and business management.
The book is a bit overstretched in other areas (or "disciplines", e.g personal mastery, etc.), which have significantly less "staying power".
Perhaps a new edition of this book should include an assessment of the successes and failures of the approach. Some of the references to "real world" adopters of the book's principles and doctrines would be interesting. Quite a good presentation after all.