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Explain (with examples) the extent to which SSM was supportive of a group approach - Essay Example

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When Peter Checkland developed Soft System Methodology (SSM) in the 60’s, he did not intend it to be a learning or development tool that will address important human problems. It was simply a qualitative technique that can be used in solving non-systemic situations using…
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Explain (with examples) the extent to which SSM was supportive of a group approach
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Download file to see previous pages Today, SSM has become a useful tool in any situation (or problem) involving human activity. Take for instance this trivial situation of two friends watching TV and arguing if the programs were good or bad. Using the SSM model, there will be no point arguing because both are right. Friend A may like it because of the pact action sequences and Friend B may not like it because the plot is too predictable. Whichever it is, SSM model argues that the standard for a good TV programs is inherent in both and one value judgment is not necessarily superior or more right than the other. If these ideas were explicit, the two friends may still argue on some points but their ideas would cease being unsubstantiated opinion and become defensible. Wilson (2001) points that defensibility should be the main criterion in an argument since ‘what is right’ in most cases, is likely unachievable. Such concept is important to complex situations in any social organization that capitalizes on defensible arguments. This report will then put primary focus on SSM supporting group approach by discussing how SSM rallies group dynamics.
Checkland introduced the steps to be followed methodically in SSM. The first step being the identification of the unstructured problem – is best accomplished as a group. For example, when the A.REthinking group was tasked to identify an ill-structured problem, it became easier to consolidate and develop ideas because feedbacks, whether positive or negative, help process and systematize insights. The more diverse the members’ backgrounds are the more enriching the discussion will be. Wilson discussed that the “people-components” can attribute meaning to their situation and define their own purpose for the organization. Checkland’s collaborators even suggested that the real potential of SSM is best exemplified in its early stages since it is the period when members of the organization achieve ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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