The W. Edwards Deming Institute Blog

Transformation of the Individual and the Organization

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Guest post by John Hunter.

This webcast shows David Langford’s presentation, When Grading Bites the Dust, at the 2012 Annual Deming Conference. A previous post (Change has to Start from the Top) includes a clip from another talk he gave at the 2012 conference and it is a valuable companion to the video included here.

The system does not want to change, too many people have too much invested in the [current] system… If you are going to do what is right for learning, what is right for students, somebody, someplace has to break out of the system.

This is true for education, it is also true for anyone seeking to transform the management system of their organization. Doing so it not easy; there are many forces that will resist change.

David Langford discusses his efforts to transform the learning environment for his students. The journey required him to continually learn himself about how to change his understanding in order to change what he could do to create the right environment to help students learn. That journey is very similar to one that managers must undertake in order to help people succeed.

Continually improving the system is hard. It is much easier to explain why people are failing (either students or workers) – “they are lazy”, “they don’t listen”, “they are not competent” etc.. The system will produce what it’s capable of producing. Managers/teachers should be improving the system so more success is possible, not spending their time ranking people and explaining why problems continue year after year.

Related: David Langford Presentation on Motivation and System ImprovementTransforming the Management of Your OrganizationThe Transformation from School Based Learning to Lifelong LearningChange the System, Get a Different Result


Categorised as: education, systems thinking, video


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