409: Kevin Cahill, part 2: Systems change, fast and effective

November 14, 2020 by Joshua
in Podcast

Everyone gets we have to change system, which means global economy. They think we have to start huge. If it’s not big enough, it’s not worth doing.

History suggests otherwise, in particular Edwards Deming’s results transforming Japan in the 50s, or the U.S. war efforts before that, or several American companies since.

Kevin runs the Deming Institute, which trains people in the Deming philosophy and practice. Kevin speaks from experience as the grandson of Dr. Deming. They didn’t start by doing big huge things. They started with a systemic perspective, understanding where and how to act. Kevin’s personal project of changing light bulbs in his house illustrates how leading this way leads to results beyond what we see with just going big from the start.

I won’t like that I often felt slack-jawed at Kevin saying exactly what I’ve tried to share with others but they never get, but Kevin speaks with decades of experience. Actually generations. I also can’t wait to start working with leaders and people in organizations who have approached and solved problems systemically, and who saw that they had to change industries and a nation for their personal benefit.

What we need to to to reverse our environmental course!

Call me crazy, but I see combining my sustainability experience and perspective with Deming company and leadership experience getting results like Japan did in the 50s and beyond.

If Japan Can Why Can’t We? is the name of the show that restarted Deming’s influence in the US. I see the question as poignant today. I believe we can turn around as fast as they did, this time on sustainability.

Let’s do this.

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