Charting the system to find a way forward
30 October 2019

In complex systems, there is no recipe for the way forward. Organisations – comprised of people with their own ideas, intentions and identities – are no exception. We can explore possibilities by charting and simulating elements of an organisational system to enhance functionality or value flow. By setting up representatives for organisational elements – an individual, a board committee, a market segment, a new policy – and creating rapid feedback mechanisms, we can use small safe-to-fail experiments to help us understand shifting relationships, explore limiting tensions or seek solutions to challenges.  Simulations can be run with an individual (using objects to represent elements) or a group (often using participants as representatives). Highly participative and possible in a single two-hour session, Incite’s systemic simulations have helped:

  • A Board of Medical Professionals realign their relationship to South Africa’s health needs
  • A senior manager at a large mining company understand why their housing policy was not acceptable
  • A leading global consumer goods company reflect on barriers to change in its culture
  • Stakeholders from government, NGOs and business explore the food-water-energy nexus.

“I found this systemic approach invaluable. Nicola supported me in my wish to hand over the organisation to new leadership with as little disruption as possible.”    Lisa Garson | Founder, Action Volunteers Africa

Please contact Nicola at to discuss how a systemic simulation might support you or your team.

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