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Mental Models

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A key component of the learning organization is a widespread understanding of the concept of mental models and of how they affect our interpersonal communication and understanding. This brief …

A key component of the learning organization is a widespread understanding of the concept of mental models and of how they affect our interpersonal communication and understanding. This brief presentation is intended to introduce mental models. It describes how they develop and what it means to LEARN at the level of our mental maps.

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  • 1. Dr. Greg Waddell www.LeadStrategic.comTwitter: @DrGregWaddell
  • 2. Look at the words in the box. Slumber Pillow Dream Night Bed Blanket Quiet Pajamas Nap Snooze
  • 3. Now write down on a piece of paper as many of thewords in the box that you can remember.
  • 4. Our minds tend to categorize thingsand then squeeze what we see into ourcategories.
  • 5. Triangles
  • 6. Triangles
  • 7. Circles
  • 8. Circles
  • 9. Our categoriesbegin to organizethemselves intosystems.
  • 10. Our categoriesbegin to organizethemselves intosystems.
  • 11. Our systems begin to organize themselves into ideologies.
  • 12. Goodness
  • 13. Goodness Wealth
  • 14. Goodness How these two are connected Wealth
  • 15. Learning at the level of our mentalmodels is categorically different fromeveryday learning.
  • 16. Problem
  • 17. ProblemCause
  • 18. Solution Problem Cause
  • 19. ImplementSolution Problem Cause
  • 20. ImplementSolution Problem Cause
  • 21. ImplementSolution Problem Cause Assumptions
  • 22. ImplementSolution Problem Priorities Cause Assumptions
  • 23. Implement CategoriesSolution Problem Priorities Cause Assumptions
  • 24. • Teach your staff to recognize their own mental maps.
  • 25. • Teach your staff to recognize their own mental maps.• Develop a culture of psychological safety where people feel free to expose their mental maps.
  • 26. • Teach your staff to recognize their own mental maps.• Develop a culture of psychological safety where people feel free to expose their mental maps.• As a leader, be willing to set the example.
  • 27. “Get your model out there where it can beshot at. Invite others to challenge yourassumptions and add their own. Instead ofbecoming a champion for one possibleexplanation or hypothesis or model, collect asmany as possible.”Donella Meadows, "Dancing With Systems: What to Do When Systems ResistChange," 2001; available from http://www.wholeearthmag.com/ArticleBin/447.html
  • 28. SourcesDenzau, A. T. and North, D. C. (September 8, 1993). Shared mental models: Ideologies & institutions. Washington University: Center for the Study of Political Economy. Accessed September 23, 2006 from http://129.3.20.41/eps/eh/papers/9309/9309003.pdfPfeffer, J. (2005) Changing mental models: HRs most important task. Human Resource Management 44(2), 123-128. Retrieved September 24, 2006, from Wiley InterScienceRichards, D. (2001) Coordination & shared mental models. Journal of Political Science 45(2), 259-276. Retrieved October 4, 2006, from Academic Search Premier, EBSCOhostSenge, P. M. (2006). The fifth discipline: The art & practice of the learning organization (Revised ed.). New York: Currency/Doubleday. (Original work published 1996).Argyris, C. & Schön, D. A. (1996). Organizational learning II: Theory, method, & practice. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.Kim, D. H. (1993) The link between individual & organizational learning. Sloan Management Review 35(1), 37-50. Retrieved August 10, 2006, from ABI/Inform Global

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