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The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of The Learning Organization Paperback – Deckle Edge, March 21, 2006
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Peter Senge, founder of the Center for Organizational Learning at MIT's Sloan School of Management, experienced an epiphany while meditating one morning back in the fall of 1987. That was the day he first saw the possibilities of a "learning organization" that used "systems thinking" as the primary tenet of a revolutionary management philosophy. He advanced the concept into this primer, originally released in 1990, written for those interested in integrating his philosophy into their corporate culture.
The Fifth Discipline has turned many readers into true believers; it remains the ideal introduction to Senge's carefully integrated corporate framework, which is structured around "personal mastery," "mental models," "shared vision," and "team learning." Using ideas that originate in fields from science to spirituality, Senge explains why the learning organization matters, provides an unvarnished summary of his management principals, offers some basic tools for practicing it, and shows what it's like to operate under this system. The book's concepts remain stimulating and relevant as ever. --Howard Rothman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
A director at MIT's Sloan School, Senge here proposes the "systems thinking" method to help a corporation to become a "learning organization," one that integrates at all personnel levels indifferently related company functions (sales, product design, etc.) to "expand the ability to produce." He describes requisite disciplines, of which systems-thinking is the fifth. Others include "personal mastery" of one's capacities and "team learning" through group discussion of individual objectives and problems. Employees and managers are also encouraged to examine together their often negative perceptions or "mental models" of company people and procedures. The text is esoteric and flavored with terms like "recontextualized rationality," but the book should help inventory-addled retailers whom the author cites as unaware of their customers' desire for quality. Macmillan Book Clubs selection.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
This book is a useful guide for those taking university statistics. It’s filled with history, personal experiences, and must-knows. It’s dense, however simplified impressively well. For example, he describes the complex system behind a descent beer company through the perspective of the Brewer, wholesaler, and retailer. Along with week by week events, Data, charts, and descriptions. Somehow, he even connects the truck driver into all this…
There are so many examples, he taps into every body’s perspective.
There is one minor drawback: he cites too many examples and naturally does not have space to explain all of them. This book might require a bit of personal research if read critically. For example, he makes controversial claims like the modern education system being flawed, and the influence of terrorism, but hesitates to dissect the issues. He throws them in as fun facts, and trusts the leader to take it from there.
His revised edition contains almost 100 new pages:
-step-by step teachings on how to be not just a leader, but also a designer, teacher, and steward
-how to reconnect within society as a whole
As an engineering major, I felt this book did a very good job in tying a lot of concepts together that is practical in the major. The book also does a good job of highlighting where systems thinking is also practical in improving broader things like family, teams and organizations along with businesses. This book is definitely worth the read for anybody as it applies to everyday interactions. For anybody with management and business control positions, this book will definitely enlighten you on the benefits of operating under a learning organization especially if working in a supply chain industry.