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Singapore Institute of Management launches centre for systems leadership
THE Singapore Institute of Management (SIM) has launched a Centre for Systems Leadership to train youths, professionals and organisational leaders to lead more successfully through systems thinking.
The centre, to be located in the existing SIM Management House in Namly Avenue, will run an 18-day programme for working professionals, spread over six months. It will also offer bespoke programmes, tailored for leadership teams in organisations and enterprises.
This is in addition to the 30-hour programmes it will run for youth leaders and final-year undergraduates from February. The centre is also planning its first systems leadership conference that same month.
Learning programmes will be run on-site. However, the centre is also working with collaborators to roll out online options from the first quarter of next year, said Seah Chin Siong, SIM's president and chief executive.
Josephine Teo, Minister for Manpower and Second Minister for Home Affairs, officiated at the centre's launch event on Thursday evening.
She said: "The more complex our problems, the more leaders need the skills and discipline of systems thinking." She added that the new centre can help to build capacity in Singapore to emerge stronger from the Covid-19 pandemic, and to develop resilience against future disruptions.
Systems thinking and leadership gained prominence in the 90s as a way of approaching issues and problem statements holistically, as part of interconnected systems and not disparate parts. Dr Peter Senge, an American systems scientist, is credited for popularising the concept as a management strategy.
SIM's Mr Seah told The Business Times: "The pandemic has shown people across the world the stark reality of how life can become when existing systems and structures, which we take for granted, no longer function properly.
"In a post Covid world, leaders and organisations will have to strive to better understand the complexities and inter-connectedness underlying the systemic structures which we have built over the years."
He added that systems thinking has helped organisations and companies overcome disruptions brought about by market shifts, new technologies and low-cost startups. He cited Barnes & Noble as an example of a company that used systems thinking to reinvent their business model; others, like Kodak, failed to comprehend how changes in the industry's ecosystem would eventually undermine their own innovation efforts.