W. Edwards Deming and Politics

The work of W. Edwards Deming was recognized by U.S News and World Report as one of the nine hidden turning points in world history and by FORTUNE Magazine as among the greatest contributions in business history.  

Although Deming’s work was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Economics, his theories have been largely ignored by the major political parties, their representatives, and the voters.

Application of Deming’s theories on macroeconomics provides the “science” that support outcomes where everyone gains or at least, are not any worse off.

On Trade for example, who gains and who loses? For those that are harmed, how effective are mitigation strategies? And, once the Trade policies are implemented, how fast will the needed changes be identified and addressed?

U.S. politics represent a zero-sum game – some win and some lose.  Take healthcare, for example; Republicans use numbers to make the case that the Affordable Care Act is a disaster (lose), and Democrats use the numbers to reinforce the good (win) news.  If the expectation is that change will result in improvement for all, when will the zero-sum approach ever be effective or sustainable?

On a politician that embraces Deming’s work, they would be grabbing the proverbial tail of a hungry tiger.  The tiger represents the expectations of We the People for “more perfect” outcomes.  When you let go of the tiger’s tail, things continue to get worse for everyone.

Quality Leadership feeds the tiger, but you still need to hold on to the tail. 🙂



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s