Angela's Reviews > The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of The Learning Organization

The Fifth Discipline by Peter M. Senge
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Aug 19, 08

bookshelves: non-fiction, to_re-read, business
Read from April 29 to June 08, 2012

The best business book I've read. So much more than I was expecting when I picked it from the how-the-heck-did-this-get-on-here part of my to-read list.
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Reading Progress

04/30/2012 page 19
4.0% ""When asked what they do for a living, most people describe the tasks they perform every day, not the purpose of the greater enterprise in which they take part. (...) When people in organizations focus only on their position, they have little sense of responsibility for the results produced when all positions interact. Moreover, when results are disappointing, it can be very difficult to know why."" 1 comment
04/30/2012 page 44
9.0% "Ha! - the author argues (compellingly) that War and Peace is an example of systems thinking: "Tolstoy argues that only in trying to understand underlying "laws of history", his own synonym for what we now call systemic structures, lies any hope for deeper understanding""
05/02/2012 page 101
22.0% ""Maintaining morale and productivity as a professional firm matures requires a different set of norms and rewards that solute work well done, not a person's place in the hierarchy. It may also require distributing challenging work assignments equitably and not to "partners only".""
05/05/2012 page 148
32.0% "Quoting George Bernard Shaw: "This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one... the being a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.""
05/06/2012 page 153
33.0% "Quoting Somerset Maugham: "Only mediocre people are always at their best.""
05/06/2012 page 155
33.0% ""People don't resist change. They resist being changed.""
05/13/2012 page 210
45.0% ""It may simply not be possible to convince human beings rationally to take a long-term view. People do not focus on the long term because they have to, but because they want to.""
05/16/2012 page 242
52.0% "Talking about Bohm's ideas on collective thought: "If collective thinking is an ongoing stream, "thoughts" are like leaves floating on the surface that wash up on the banks. We gather in the leaves, which we experience as "thoughts". We misperceive the thoughts as our own, because we fail to see the stream of collective thinking from which they arise.""
05/16/2012 page 248
53.0% ""two types of consensus: a "focusing down" type of consensus that seeks the common denominator in multiple individual views, and an "opening up" type of consensus that seeks a picture larger than any one person's point of view.""
05/23/2012 page 281
61.0% ""Such leaps of abstraction are particularly dangerous in seemingly "open" organizations, where people discuss their views freely and opinions can gain agreement rapidly, thereby quickly assuming the status of unassailable fact.""
05/23/2012 page 290
63.0% ""The illusion of being in control can appear quite real. (...) Power may be concentrated at the top but having the power of unilateral decision making is not the same as being able to achieve one's objectives.""
05/24/2012 page 301
65.0% ""Learning organizations practice forgiveness because, as Cray Research's CEO John Rollwagen says, "Making the mistake is punishment enough."""
05/28/2012 page 340
73.0% ""At its heart, the traditional view of leadership is based on assumptions of people's powerlessness, their lack of personal vision and inability to master the forces of change, deficits which can be remedied only by a few great leaders.""
06/03/2012 page 374
81.0% ""It is tempting to think that just because one understands certain principles one has "learned" about the discipline. This is the familiar trap of confusing intellectual understanding with learning. Learning always involves new understandings and new behaviors, "thinking" and "doing".""

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