Whole Systems Thinking


Organisations are ‘living systems’ which are as complex as the people that make them up. Human beings are much more than just physical beings; our mind, body and spirit are inter-related in complex ways.

Organisations are ‘socio-technical systems’; they comprise people in all their complexity as well as structures, facilities, processes and procedures. It is the intentions and actions of people which bring to life the inert organisational structures and processes.

Organisations are best understood as ‘complex adaptive systems’. The patterns of interaction and feedback between elements in the system can lead to unexpected reactions. The system as a whole and the components within it have to constantly adapt and respond to internal and external changes.



Organisations have their equivalent elements expressed by our Tricord model.


“We all found your work with us very helpful and positive and it has helped set us on a strong course to get the structure into better shape.”

Melanie Sirotkin, Deputy Chief Executive, NHS Tameside and Glossop

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