The Effects of Purposes on the Community

Applying the Science of Systems Thinking to Decision Making

Another critical component of big picture thinking concerns the ripple effects the organizational purposes have on community, whether corporate or external. Recall that the purposes of any organization, including business, are the conceptual ideals, the driving vision, either for the organization as a whole and for any decisions as these have an impact on goals and mission. Those purposes will affect the corporate community to society at large. Modern business needs to look beyond the profit drive and find ways to balance between maintaining a positive ledger at the end of the year, and sustaining positive community well-being. Here are some questions you need to ask to understand the effects of the purposes on community.

Who is involved?

From the decision makers to the shop floor worker and on to customers, outside suppliers and people directly linked to the organization, there can be many people who are involved. You must first ask yourself what you hope to achieve with an issue or decision at hand, and from there determine the ripple effects on the local and global community. And these effects include considerations of the political climate as much as the physical environment.

What are the positive and negative effects on those involved?

This is every positive and negative effect that might arise from anticipating your end goals. Do they present a negative impact on the environment? Will they cost people jobs? Do they entail employing more people? Do they give your corporation a positive or negative perception? What are the positive and negative effects on the local or global community? You must also consider health concerns and even cultural issues that might arise from following through on your goals.


What are the anticipated or real responsibilities of those involved?

This question means you must dig a little deeper and predict the particular and adaptive responsibilities for those involved. What burden will be laid upon the surrounding, local community? Which environmental concerns might be raised or need to be considered? Who will be responsible for PR, cleanup, management, or dealing with any residual effects? Once you understand the effects, you can better understand responsibilities.

There are many questions within each system or big picture cluster of the FoRSE™ Matrix system, and in order to gain a big(ger) picture understanding, you must take each one and answer all of the questions involved. When it comes to understanding the effects of the purposes (ideals/goals) on the community, it is about understanding ripple effects on the local and global community, environment, and employees of the company itself.

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