Chapter 7. The Science of Synchronization

There are no separate systems. The world is a continuum. Where to draw a boundary around a system depends on the purpose of the discussion.

Donella H. Meadows, Thinking in Systems (Chelsea Green, 2008)

Your organization is a living, evolving entity, pulsing with vibrant interactions among complex systems made of people, technology, and processes. Systems with many, constantly changing connections are called networks.

Chapter 6 dove into the art of harmonizing concepts. We navigated the labyrinth of aligning user perspectives (the Who) and the myriad systems across which these concepts spring to life (the Where). We raised a toast to you, the data champion, as you journeyed to achieve symmetry of concepts between distinct perspectives.

Let’s hold on to that champagne cork for just a bit longer; our voyage isn’t complete. An agreement on definitions of concepts only pieces together part of our puzzle. The unutilized potential of concepts, trapped as thoughts and not propelling action, is a hollow victory. The align phase of unifying isn’t merely about harmonizing concepts to the same musical key; it’s also about synchronizing how concepts are used in action to the same musical time signature.

In order to direct this dance across the organization, we must shift our lens to a wider panorama, viewing the organization as a collection of intricate, interconnected networks that are collaborating and learning together. With this approach, we ...

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