Deming in 1980 LO5371

John Woods (
Mon, 5 Feb 1996 15:54:16 -0600 (CST)

Replying to LO5278 --

Julie Beedon said about Deming:
>....and I know in the New Economics as he presents his ideas about a
>system for profound knowledge one of the 4 aspects of the system is a
>theory of knowledge which seems to me to be talking about organizational
>learning ..... the only thing I would say (without wishing to be purist)
>is that he did not like to be associated with TQM in any way.... although
>my own experiences of applying and developing his thinking inside an
>organization left me wondering why??

I think the reason Deming did not want to be associated with TQM per se is
because he had an anathema to fads and quick fixes, which is how TQM is
often presented to people, at least in the popular press. He knew that
the tools, techniques, and mindset he was discussing were/are not a fad,
but a more realistic way of managing once you understand an organization
from the systems perspective. Thus, this is not TQM as some special
management technique but simply "management" intelligently practiced by
those who have what we might call an "enlightened" view of what an
organization is and how to get the best from people. We can call this TQM
as long as we appreciate that we are really talking about a more realistic
set of management practices based on the systems view and not some fad
that can be replaced 6 months from now by some other fad. Hope this is

John Woods
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