Self-organising complex marketing systems LO26654

From: Gavin Ritz (
Date: 05/09/01

Replying to LO26651 --

Hi Winfried

I was wondering when you would make an entry. Hello

> John Zavacki writes:
> >First, I seek marketing not as a discipline, but as a whole.
> I agree fully to Johns advocacy.
> And I want to repeat my point that it is markets, not marketing which are
> no systems and no wholes. Markets form the context, environment,
> surrounding of an organization. As such, markets are always more complex
> than organizations. Organizations encounter markets as open horizons in
> their self-organizing sense making. Markets on the other hand "measure"
> organizations by means of "expectations".

Of this you are correct, expectations, needs, desires, hopes, wants all
form a part of marketing. And this suction (pull) side of the whole which
must include input (demand), transformation, (or pump) and supply. XYZ is
the whole and not just the X as I have mentioned, see my other threads on
this discussion. In my opinion no matter which way one looks at it
marketing the discipline can never be a whole. However markets can if we
take a person (that is a whole) form markets plus businesses which are
also wholes. So we have a bit of a dichotomy here markets are wholes but
the discipline is not. The person who is in the marketing role is a whole,
but the role is not.

So we seem to have an exact opposite of points of view here.

That of course is dependent on how you view what a whole is and your
categorical identities and boundary limits.

> One goal of an organization is
> to sustain its identity in the field which the market forms.

Yes, absolutely. There should be nice matches wholes with wholes.

A whole is always a processing structure with a well defined categorical
identity with degrees of freedom of association, has boundary limits,
openness and can link with other wholes and can always reproduce itself.
It also has a sensory logic too it. Check that with the 7E's of creativity
if you don't agree with me. It also can produce entropy.

As I mentioned on another thread. "The biggest problem in our scientific
studies has just to do with this issue of boundaries and wholes. e.g. if I
look at entropy at only the transformational stage (Y) then I have to
deduce that entropy is disorder. If I view it from the whole. I have to
deduce that it is first order, then disorder then order again. I now have
both order and disorder. No wonder scientists are having continuos battles
over the issue of entropy. Where are they drawing the boundaries?"

My question to you is what do you think a whole is and where do you draw
the boundary?

I must add I do not think that it is self organizing (a firm) in the sense
that it is spontaneous. Because one always has to apply work to the whole
for it to function (a firm). AND the definition of work in this sense is
like force times distance but the mental concentration over targeted time.
(W=FTT, force over targeted time) and the possible outcomes are always
unpredictably open.

> Marketing takes place on a tacit level, as long as no formal marketing
> arises. As John pointed out, marketing goes through the whole value chain
> of a product from its specification to its delivery.

Well , we might have to differ slightly on this, the discipline of supply
chain takes the supply to delivery these days. What you are talking about
there is supply, demand link which is not a whole. That is like someone
holding my arm and me holding their arm and saying our arms form a whole.
They only form the link between me (a whole) and my wife (a whole).

> The tacit level
> suffices as long as the market is friendly to the organization and the
> choices which an organization can make are not too complex. But as the
> complexity grows, some day formal marketing will emerge - a consciousness
> for the dependence from an outer context and what to do about it.

In complex adaptive systems markets tag their products and products tag
the markets. So the demand side has the potential to form a whole at its
supply side. The string looks like this sort of [d-t-s]-[d-t-s]-[d-t-s]-
with d=demand, t=transformation or pump, s=supply. where dts is the whole.
Imagine millions of these things in connection with each other, this is
like Stuart Kauffman's NK model. This forms our economies, societies at
all levels. Parallel strings interconnecting.

> How such marketing will look like seems to me as diverse as the
> organizations carrying, incorporating, defending, embracing... it.

This might be so, but has nothing to do with whether it is defined as a
whole or not. All wholes have survival value, hence we might protect our
role as a financail accountant in a compnay but the role is not a whole
and the person is we just confuse it to be. One of the main reasons for
inter personal conflict in our times.



Gavin Ritz <>

Learning-org -- Hosted by Rick Karash <> Public Dialog on Learning Organizations -- <>

"Learning-org" and the format of our message identifiers (LO1234, etc.) are trademarks of Richard Karash.