Luc, I think you have clearly described in a very down-to-earth way one particular value of the VSM and systems thinking in actual use,

Roger

On 12 Dec 2008, at 22:17, Luc Hoebeke wrote:

Dear Harold,

Quite interesting case. Reading your description, I get the impression that you think about VSM as having to model the restaurant business. The strength of the VSM is that you can focus on the system in focus and make a model to be able to act in your described complexity.
Talking about recursion levels: the question is how autonomously do the restaurants operate and what are the emerging characteristics (essential variables) of what you call the chain. Rarely emergent characteristics correspond to the sum of characteristics of individual restaurants. Furthermore if the chain has more than 10 restaurants, you always statistically will find out that about 20% are performing poorly in relation to the 80% others (statistical law of Pareto). Pareto discovered an emerging characteristic of interdependent systems. 
I don't think it is essential to work on the subsystem level of one restaurant. The interdependencies due to the clients requirements of the processes in the kitchen and in the restaurant are too intense to look at them from a separate recursion level. You know my opinion of span of relations which are manageable. 
Remember that each restaurant shall have its own essential variables, which always are contextual, and as previously mentioned from the CYBERSYN experience, are best defined by those actors living them day to day. Probably that many of the problems which the chain owner is confronted with are due to the fact that he thinks that he has to manage 10 or more homogeneous restaurants, in this way trying to reduce the horiontal variety, needed for each restaurant to cope with its own environment. 
If he measures the performance of the restaurant only with quantitative, monetary measures, he is comparing apples with lemons: if performance is sourness, you know where the poor performers will be found. 
A good discussion with your friend and what he is confronted with could take place, without mentioning to him the VSM, but based upon the insights of the VSM to ask him relevant questions which help him to reframe the issues he is confronted with by a systemic perspective.

Kind regards,

Luc


Op 12-dec-08, om 20:22 heeft Garderen, Harold van het volgende geschreven:

Roger (and all),
 
Thanks for your kind words. But I find it hard to get the '60s and '70s into 21st. For example ....
 
A friend of mine has a chain of restaurants, most do well but two are underperforming. We had a discussion yesterday on VSM and ofcourse I mentioned that VSM is a diagnotic tool used for such situations: don't touch what works, try to fix the two that are broken, one at a time.
 
But ooh, that ain't easy. Kitchen with chef, personnel, purchasing according to season, ingredient-stock, order coming in, wine-cave, etc. How to diagnose the kitchen of a restaurant? Next the dining area: waiters, menu, bar, tables, people waiting to be seated, groups calling in, money coming in, orders, deliveries, etc, etc,. I guess there are two VSM's on the lowest level: kitchen and dining room that form the lowest recursion level. Next level is "the restaurant"? Paychecks, markteting, maintenance budget
 
Knowing that my friend has a chain probably the next recursion level is the chain?
 
I was thinking .... isn't that a good case to describe for "businessmen of the 21st century"?  Anybody in the list ever done this?
 
Harold


From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford Beer [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Roger Harnden
Sent: vrijdag 12 december 2008 16:18
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: informative Blog

Harold, you are absolutely on target. For it to become 21st century, it has to BE 21st century - in the presentation of ideas and images used, in the language, and in its modes of expression.

Roger
On 12 Dec 2008, at 13:36, Garderen, Harold van wrote:

Hi Roger,
 
You are right, succesrate are low, but on the other hand, with 30 people one can do a lot.
 
A colleage of mine started his blog over a year ago and now has a reader list of >70 of people all over the world he didn't know before.
 
I would love the VSM community to make more use of publicly visible platforms to improve the chance that more people discover.
 
For that use of mundane language is needed. I'm not happy with my own blog in that respect.
 
Harold
 
 


From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford Beer [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Roger Harnden
Sent: vrijdag 12 december 2008 14:10
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: informative Blog

Yes, I can see, Harold

However as you and I both know from the literature (Weinberger, Tapscott, Shirky and others), though potential visibiity and audience is huge, actual success is pretty dismal. 

I think the main thing is to hang on in there, and gradually get linked to a wider and wider, but sometimes focused, audience. However, Harold, it surely does get frustrating talking to oneself!!!

Mind, I think I prefer this mode of expression to monologue authorship. At least here, there is a sort of reality check, or even contribution/dislocation whihc can be creative. Whereas traditional authorship didn't have such safety vales,

Roger
On 12 Dec 2008, at 12:54, Garderen, Harold van wrote:

Thanks Roger,
 
I can do with some visitors and lots of comments to react on:-) Current traffic is at 1 a day (googles daily check). So I'm writing to myself.
 
What I'm trying to do is raise interest in Beer c.s., + OL (Wenger c.s.) and Sense-making (Snowden c.s) in the hope to attract an active crowd to work with.
 
Harold


From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford Beer [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Roger Harnden
Sent: vrijdag 12 december 2008 13:46
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: informative Blog

Harold's blog. Well worth a look,

Roger

http://fragmentedliving.blogspot.com/



On 12 Dec 2008, at 12:00, Garderen, Harold van wrote:

Hi Roger,

Did you write the Quaterly?

Harold

Now blogging at http://fragmentedliving.blogspot.com/


-----Original Message-----
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Modeling Emergent Structure

Very to the point, Harold,

Roger

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