Q1. WHAT IS THE EQUIVALENT CONCEPT TO THE FIFTH DISCIPLINE?
Right now perhaps Presencing (Otto Sharmers’ works) may come close to it but then again presencing is a derivate of the five disciplines. So the answer is none.
Here’s why the answer is none. Most concepts of management as we know today are derivatives of practices of management from within the military. The five disciplines were developed as an anti-thesis to the military management and therefore act as anti-dotes to the conventional forms of management practices as we know today.
Here’s why this became necessary. Not known to many, except by their leaders, most organizations are expensive to run (which adds to inflationary, tax and interest rate pressures we face as nations) and have gone realistically past their expiry dates at the expense of families, states and nations. That is because, like the wars, war management practices survives best for the short-term, you go in (with a goal), to kill the enemy and then you get out. But if the enemy does not die, and you do not want to die, and if the war prolongs, eventually countries bow out. The war becomes expensive. Companies that adopt those practices rarely survives their fortieth birthday. 70-80% companies do not survive their founders.
However there are organizations that have grown (not just survived) even after hundreds of years (where their costs contained within income levels) some by as long as 700 years and when we study their models, their behaviours are more consistent with that of the five disciplines (discipline, meaning, the behave just like the way we breath air – it is subconscious and an inherent part of who they are) – it is not a model that is applied on them and measured – they just become it.
And therefore these organizations withstand better the test of time by learning as organizations both in clarifying where they want to be as individuals and organizations and having a clarity of what is happening today that allows for change to move creatively with time for them as they find being able to hold the tension between the two realities much better. It is often not an emotive experience (and therefore less costly). It is creative (and therefore attracts better incomes).
Q2. IN WHICH PART(S) OF THE WORLD, HAS THE REACH BEEN SIGNIFICANT AND HOW WAS IT ACHIEVED?
The world over has experienced wars to larger or smaller degree. And so this work has stayed relatively new to the globe. We have been spinning the old wheel for centuries, have we not? It is therefore calls for a change that wants to happen over night but often finds it is not able to do so. The ruts have become deeply entrenched from our pasts. Would that make sense?
But if we recognized these ruts ourselves, the change is often very quick. We need to see ourselves how we model our minds and then it becomes easy. Often however, for mindsets to work they are designed so as not to be spotted easily, often couched in our fears that when we do not want to face them ourselves, these sets in ours minds go undetected and therefore untenable. It is the perfect trap!
And so the best ways, I have found helpful to enter with any group is at the head of the state or the Prime Ministers’ Office. They are often saddled with persistent issues and conventional management concepts are not designed for long-standing issues (remember wars. they are designed for the short-term even when one says it is strategic). These are issues that have resisted all other forms of management to-date.
When we go in with the five disciplines, they often become very clear what to do because these five disciplines begin to throw a very clear light on why the issues have stayed resistant. They now feel less lonely and less afraid of failures.
These can be issues such as unemployment, poverty, crime, diseases, land conflicts, human-wildlife conflicts, droughts, education attainment by population, productivity and so on. These are not corporate issues. They are state, national/federal or regional issues. Here’s where I keep a list of national resistant issues and the ones I have opened link represent issues where a fair amount of research has begun or its analyses have completed: https://pinnacleacademy.weebly.com/stldiafrica.html
Q3. HOW IS THE CONCEPT MARKETED?
Since the focus of this work is primarily to the head of the state (at national and regional levels) and not the corporates, marketing has not become as big an issue here.
Once as practitioners we have had a good grounding in the theory and practice of the five disciplines, we often find we develop the language naturally inherent in the works, to market to that target group. Heads of state are often lonely people. They claw their way to the top with their agenda only to find when they get there that there are already a plethora of issues waiting for them that clawing their way to the top (the goal for them) had not prepared them to deal with them. They are usually dumbfounded and find themselves saddled. They often watch their own manifestos erode right before their eyes.
As the results of the work unfolds, corporates at various sectors follow on from there as they too begin to see the impact of behaviours of these issues over time and their impacts on what happens within the corporates as well as (it is like a new pair of eyes happens for them), and so, the influence moves from that level.
Hence, this is why I am targeting to build post-graduate two year master’s programme (that is the time that is required to internalize the five disciplines) aimed at leaders at all sectors of the country within national and state universities and they would be required to submit a research paper on live systemic / resistant issues and how their practice has allowed the community turn the issues around, to qualify for certification.
When we build a sufficient pool of these practitioners in each area, we build a community of practitioners who then take the works with them through life as well.
Q4. FROM YOUR PERSPECTIVE, WHAT WOULD BE THE SHORT AND LONG-TERM OBJECTIVES OF EXPANDING THIS CONCEPT IN ANY COUNTRY?
How about I stop here and this can be a subject of your discussions or perhaps things that you can glean from these outlines here? What do you think could be the responses to this query? What would you like to see happen?