Systems Thinking Clinics

Leading change effectively across complex systems is both an art and a science. It requires a mix of sensitive listening and (small p) political and leadership skills, and a strong appreciation of how systems work: what makes them tick, what changes their performance and behaviour, and how to make logical sense of what you are seeing when you investigate and change them.

We have commissioned a series of system working clinics for people who are leading or directly involved in change which extends across more than one organisational boundary.

The clinics will be led by two highly experienced systems practitioners with a breadth of experience in understanding and improving systems, and in developing critical system working skills in others (see their Bios below).

The clinics’ focus and topics will be shaped by the participants’ situations; the tutors will explore these with you, and will bring to life relevant principles, methods, tools, tactics and tips for:

  • Setting up a system intervention;
  • Working productively with differing views;
  • Sifting ‘signal’ from ‘noise’ in the system, and knowing what to pay attention to;
  • Overcoming resistance – from the system and the people within it;
  • Making meaningful change happen;
  • Predicting and preventing ‘unintended consequences’;
  • Gathering evidence and measuring performance;
  • Reaching agreement and moving forward as a system, in collaboration with others.

The clinics will be run along the lines of an action learning session.  As such they are limited to 6 participants. Each of the participants will have an opportunity to present their issue/ challenge /area of work and explore with the system experts new approaches, solutions, tips and advice about how to proceed to make their change programme work more effectively. All the participants in the clinic will benefit from exploring their own issues and also listening to the issues and dialogue about other system challenges.

Please email  [email protected]  if you would like to clarify any details about these clinics.

Please only book if you are confident that you can attend; we need all six participants for the clinic to be an effective learning environment.

Event Date Event Time Booking Link
22nd June 13:30-17:00Book Here
12 July 13:30-17:00Book Here
12 September 9:00-12:30Book Here

Prior to the event, you will be asked to complete a short pre-course reflection to inform the content of the clinic. This piece of work should take no longer than 30 minutes.

Facilitator Bios:

John Rogers

John spent ten years in Wiltshire Council (2010-2020) building a substantial team of systems thinking practitioners and leading large-scale systems thinking work across complex services in Wiltshire Council, Wiltshire Police, and key partners including NHS and community and voluntary sector organisations. John also delivered the council’s short immersion courses in systems thinking to about 1,000 staff from across the Wiltshire system.

While at Wiltshire Council, John was the Chair of the national Trailblazer Committee for the Systems Thinking Practitioner (level 7) Apprenticeship through all stages to publication (2018-20).

Since leaving Wiltshire Council, John has worked as an independent practitioner focusing on capability development in accessible and applied systems practice (working together on our system), and early-stage practitioner development. His recent and current assignments include:

  • System Leadership and Thinking Competency Framework (Somerset ICS); this competency framework is for the whole system: all sectors, organisations, and workforce roles.
  • Coaching Somerset NHS and local government staff in system working.
  • System working masterclass series (Gloucestershire ICS); the current cohort is focused on Urgent and Emergency Care system; previous and future cohorts are for senior management, commissioning and change professionals across the system.
  • Online programme of straightforward system working activities (learning through doing) for self-directed learning groups (South West Leadership Academy).
  • Course tutor on the Systems Thinking Practitioner (level 7) Apprenticeship (Cherith Simmons LLP).

John is a director of Systems Practitioner Assessment Ltd (, the End Point Assessment Organisation for the Systems Thinking Practitioner Apprenticeship, and a member of the UK Board of SCiO (, the professional body for all schools of systems thinking practice.

Prior to working in local government, John worked as a principal consultant in the change management practice of a large outsourcing consultancy, in an international charity, and as a front-line health worker in community and hospital settings.

Simon MacCormac

Simon is an experienced senior consulting partner and systems thinker with more than 30 years’ global experience. He has built and managed large consulting practices and assisted organisations at all levels realise strategy and disruptive transformation benefits across and between industries – including telecoms, media, manufacturing, transportation, financial services, healthcare, defence and the public sector.

Simon has led client-facing consulting operations in Europe, North America, Asia, Middle East and Africa for prestige firms including Arthur D. Little, Deloitte and Computer Sciences Corporation.

Simon is a member of SCiO (Systems and Complexity in Organisation) and is a tutor on SCiO’s Level 7 Systems Thinking Practitioner Apprenticeship programme, where he focuses on consulting craft skills and interventions.

Simon is also a member of the joint GO-Science/SCiO Systems Thinking Working Group, assisting central government (through the Government Office for Science) assess the current state of systems thinking research, education, training, and consultancy in the UK, and reviewing how systems thinking is understood and deployed in the UK Government.

Simon has led engagements (including at Prime Minister level) for the governments of UK, Singapore, UAE, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Brunei. He has also overseen major programmes to utilise big data and analytics within the national healthcare systems in Brunei and Malaysia.

Simon has also built client-facing consulting businesses within Nokia, Nortel and Lucent. He is a Chartered IT Professional and a member of the British Computer Society.