IV. The Weak Link

This is the 4th in a series of postings on whole systems thinking. 

A system is as strong as its weakest link. The link that breaks when a chain is stressed, is the part within the whole, person within the group and nation within the global community that is—or becomes—dysfunctional under stress. 

To counteract the “weak link” principle, we assemble the strongest, most competent, collaborative, creative… people possible, get the best information we can, maintain or replace old equipment, invest time, money or energy in building for the future and elect officials who have demonstrated competence and ethical and principled decision-making abilities when under pressure.

Contemplating The Weak Link

My contemplation on this subject is perfectly summarized in the following quotes.

If it is true that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link, isn’t it also true a society is only as healthy as its sickest citizen and only as wealthy as its most deprived? 

Maya Angelou

A chain is no stronger than its weakest link, and life is after all a chain.

William James

When we believe that the world makes us, that it determines what we can and cannot do, then we see ourselves as small and weak. But when we understand that we make the world—individually and together—then we become formidable and strong.

Lewis Richmond

 

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