I’d like to see some posts about how to implement change in an organization. How does one get an organization to start looking at itself as a system? How does one get the organization to realize that the most important figures are unknown and unknowable? How does one convince an organization the importance of driving out fear? In short, how does one get an organization to listen to what Deming had to say?
Thanks for your comments. We will certainly address those topics in future posts.
We have explored some similar ideas in the past, here are some links that may be useful.
Dr. Deming "Statistical principles and techniques must be rooted and nourished with patience, support, and recognition from top management."
I don't think there are simple answers to your questions that take the form of do this simple thing and what concerns you is taken care of right away. You need to work with what you can and gain credibility so people are more and more willing to listen to you. Transforming the Organization – Deming Podcast with David Langford has some good ideas.
I have written about the questions you bring up on my Curious Cat Management blog: Habits and What to Do To Create a Continual Improvement Culture.
My basic philosophy is that the way to do what you are asking is to help people improve and while doing so explain how it relates to the points you mention (fear caused the problem we had to fix...). Few believe you at first. After you help numerous times more people start to believe maybe the overall philosophy actually is worth listening to since you seem to be able to make things better and you keep tying it back to view the organization as a system, understanding variation (and what data can and cannot tell you...), etc..