21 Jan 1997
LO list as practise field
From: “Malcolm Burson”
For all the fact that our common link is declared to be a shared interest in organizational learning, and the application of those models to work and life, we [don't] seem to be very good at using our LO list experience as a way to reflect and then apply learning. Maybe I've been missing something, but I don't often see us consciously and intentionally drawing meaning from what happens here, and then trying to link it to organizational life.
What can we learn from the behaviour of the list members?
- People “define” and “walk the talk” their learning differently? Or do they (some) just chip in for the sake of contributing?
- People learn more about themselves after / while they're expressing
themselves in the list? Or maybe learn about how others learn?
- People feel / think they add value by chipping in, regardless the
content, directly or indirectly? How do they know that?
- Others ...
07 Jan 1997
Key success factors
From: “Myers, Kent”
The concept of 'key' or 'critical' success factor is the perfect opposite of systems thinking.
“Perfect opposite” implies mutual exclusiveness. I would suggest that key success factor (KSF) is actually a subset of systems thinking.
I agree that organisations could not substantiate their competitive advantage w/out the “fit.” But not very many companies have the resources, knowledge and time to “fix” everything all at once. Prioritisation is usually in order. The top priorities are usually what give the most mileage for the effort. They are called KSF not because they by themselves bring success, but because in the whole system, they are the ones w/ high profile. It does not mean that we can neglect the rest though. Without the “fit,” the KSFs will not get us very far.
What is Southwest's core competence? Its key success factors? The correct answer is that everything matters. Southwest's strategy involves a whole system of activities, not a collection of parts. Its competitive advantage comes from the way its activities fit and reinforce each other.”
If “fit” is all there is to it, there wouldn't be much differentiation between Southwest and the rest of the industry. Therefore, Southwest' performance would not be that far off from the rest of the industry. I think Southwest did a few things differently and well, and their whole system “fit” to support those differentiating factors. Hence their success. It's those differentiating factors that we usually label KSF.
Would they be as successful w/out the “fit”? Probably not.