Analyzing the Impact of Mental Models
Each individual views the world around himself or herself in a unique way, based on past actions, learning, experiences, and consequences. These mental models help guide the way individuals reach decisions and form opinions. Mental models may become troublesome if an individual is not able or willing to try to view reality from a different point of view. In this week’s Resources, Senge discusses mental models and why mental models are so powerful.
As you review the Learning Resources this week, continue your research in the Walden University Library, and prepare your Discussion posting, contemplate the following:
Recall a past experience where your personal mental models may have impacted your effectiveness or results.
How can mental models aid in developing feedback loops? How can mental models be a hindrance?
Now answer the following:
- Describe an example from your professional life where you made a leap of abstraction. In the future, what would you do differently to avoid “leaps of abstraction” in your mental models? As a manager, how can you take advantage of reflective practice as a tool to help with your continued personal growth and learning?
- Senge states that agreement is not necessarily the goal, but that many mental models may exist simultaneously. How, as a manager, could you help develop a “commitment to truth” in your organization to respond to varying mental models? How would you communicate and facilitate that commitment?
- As a manager, what would you do if an employee could not or would not break free of a mental model that hindered his or her effectiveness or the potential for successful outcomes?
Be sure to support all work is in APA format with specific citations.
Meadows, D. (2008). Thinking in systems. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green Publishing.
Thinking in Systems
Chapter 2, “A Brief Visit to the Systems Zoo”
In Chapter 2, the author introduces simple systems. These systems create their own behavior based on the system’s unique structures. By using an example of a zoo, the author demonstrates principles of complex systems.
Senge, P. (2006). The fifth discipline: The art & practice of the learning organization. New York: Doubleday.
The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of the Learning Organization
Chapter 9, “Mental Models”
This chapter focuses on the importance of mental models in systems theory. Mental models are concerned with the behavior of individuals and the beliefs and experiences that have formed these behaviors. The importance of the mental model is that it can inhibit individuals from getting an accurate picture of reality. The author articulates why the failure to understand what is really occurring can be detrimental to a business.