Congruent Concepts on Quality Management

Article

Dimitroff, Gail R.   (1990, ASQC)   General Dynamics, San Diego, CA

Annual Quality Congress, San Francisco, CA    Vol. 44    No. 0
QICID: 9442    May 1990    pp. 146-152
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Article Abstract

This paper will explore the recurrent themes in the works of two legendary geniuses of our century, W. Edwards Deming and Buckminster Fuller. Deming gave guidance and direction to the transformation of Japan from a defeated nation to the industrial giant of today. Fuller invented the geodesic dome and the dymaxion house, car, and map, and viewed the Earth as a spaceship in need of expert management. His geometric logic and original metaphors have been focused on the most urgent task of our time -- the effort to save Spacecraft Earth from disaster. Managers today must face the reality that they live and work in the most confusing cultural environment in history. The prime task of management is the effective leadership of organizational culture.

It is only through a change of consciousness that either industry or the world will be transformed. Both Deming and Fuller emphasize that transformation is our responsibility as we create and explore new dimensions. Both exhort that we disconnect from the past, and both feel that mathematical data must be practically understood and applied if systems are to be altered in a positive way. Yet there is a natural tendency to cling to old methods and to shy away from an orderly regrouping in respect to the irreversible changes that are imminent. Fuller states, "It is evident that 99 percent of society is now preoccupied positively or negatively only with status quo. Ergo, with non-reality, ergo, ignorantly."

Both Fuller and Deming argue that a major amplification of education and re-orientation is called for. Deming outlines a theory of management for improvement of quality, productvity and competitive position. He lists fourteen points as the basis for transforming industry.

Fuller argues that there is an emerging collective/individual responsibility to operate evolutionary check and balance mechanism. There is an overall global complex resource accounting basic which has been ignored. He has explored the cracks and fissures in our present economic systems and determined that we are about to pass from this inherendy flawed structure to a bold new organization. He puts forth a philosophy in which an informed humanity cooperates synergetically to manage in a most economical order.

The paper will include a look at management as a continually transforming process and at the interoperative and congruent pattern that arises from the Deming-Fuller connection. The synthesis points the way to transformation on the industrial level and on the global level. There is a difference between transformation by accident and transformation by system design. One is dangerous and unreliable. The other is reasonably safe, directed and attainable, Deming and Fuller suggest the latter in what might be termed a profound moment in human evolution.

Keywords

Fuller, Buckminster,Quality management (QM),Deming, W. Edwards


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