Those who think that someone else is thinking in them, will be regarded as psychologically conspicuous (at least in our culture). A team that cannot distinguish whose presence has relevance for the team (and who is a guest), will become confused and lose its ability to work. An organisation that equates its decisions with the profit expectations of the shareholders, gives up the difference between itself and the environment.
What all three examples share, is that they must be able to distinguish between their own and outside events. Otherwise they give up their ‘boundaries’ and are no longer able to function as systems. Systems maintain themselves by turning external stimuli into internal information. Even the nervous system ‘calculates’ colour and tone from waves! From certain sounds of others, the psychological system makes words that means something (to itself). However, it is always one’s own information, never the information of another, which is created and processed in one’s own head. Each department responds with its own reactions to the management decision. Therefore, the management will never know, what it is ‘causing’ with its decisions!
Operational closure, therefore, means that each system choses its course of action itself (=operativity), and whether, how and by which means it reacts to the environment. In this way, it can distinguish itself from the outside and form an identity. Each system arrives at its own results from interaction with its environment. For this reason alone, change and with it, consultation, becomes possible.