Systems are seductive

This content is syndicated from Energized Work | agile in action by Simon Baker. To view the original post in full, click here.

We leap into solving problems with a system of our own design because we convince ourselves they do the job faster, better, and more easily than we can do it.From the moment we set up a system, it will demand our attention. It will grow and spread and encroach. It will behave strangely, do things we didn’t expect it to do, and it will break in unexpected ways. All our time will be spent caring for it and feeding it. The system will introduce new problems that will distract us from our purpose. Whenever we think we can get some value-adding work done the system will get in the way. Worse, Le Chatelier’s Principle tells us a system opposes it’s own purpose. That is a system produces what it wants to produce, which is often not what we design it to produce. No matter what we do, the system is here to stay and do its own thing.But what about the automobile industry? What about the awesomeness of Toyota? They supply us with millions of cars each year, designed to our tastes and tailored to our demands. The reason we think the automobile industry is meeting our needs is that we have almost forgotten what we originally wanted. You say “car” and I think black, supercharged HSE Range Rover Sport with 5 litre V8 engine. I don’t think a means of getting from A to B that is affordable, convenient, safe, and fast.Systems distort reality and brainwash us. They sweet-talk until we come to believe that whatever the system delivers is what we really wanted all along. When we have forgotten the original purpose, the system will appear to us to be functioning perfectly. Our perception of reality has been changed. Encroachment is complete.We have been assimilated.

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