Can We Train Management Students to be Systems Thinkers- Additional Results

Sigal Koral Kordova, Moti Frank

Abstract


Systems-thinking, a holistic approach that puts the study of wholes before that of parts, is an efficient way of dealing with real-world situations. By emphasizing the interrelationships between the system's components rather than the components themselves, systems thinking allows us to increase our personal and professional effectiveness, and transform our organizations. Specifically, systems thinkers can conceptually analyze the system without knowing all the details, recognizing the forest through the trees. They can see beyond the surface to the deeper patterns that are responsible for creating behavior.

 The current study deals with the development of systems thinking among students and graduates of technology management. The goals of the study are to identify the factors that influence the development of systems thinking and to find ways to encourage this development. We used a variety of research tools:  A questionnaire for assessing the capacity for systems thinking, The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) personality type test and supervisor evaluations.

 In conclusion, the current study findings show that graduates with certain personality traits can gradually acquire or improve their capacity for systems thinking by receiving appropriate training and through a wide range of work experience, and by holding different job positions over time. Having a broad range of professional experience and holding different job positions can help graduates gain knowledge and become familiar with diverse systems and technologies.


Keywords


systems thinking; systems engineering; capacity for systems thinking; engineering systems thinking

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