ASQ - Team and Workplace Excellence Forum

Online Edition - August 2000

Issue Highlight - Homeward Bound
--- Peter Block offers some practical reccomendations about how to create balance and harmony in your life.
These recommendations are guaranteed to work or your time back."

In This Issue...
The Economics of Choice
Children: A Blessing or a Lucky Taxbreak
Welcome to the Wild West
The Struggle to Have It All

Peter Block Column
Day In The Life Stories
Views for a Change

Heard on the Street
Letters to the Editor

    Letters to the Editor

Block—Loud and Clear

I wanted you to know I really enjoyed Peter Block's column in the June 1999 News for a Change. It was about the entitled customer. I quoted him in the manuscript I am sending to Quorum Books written about advocacy issues in the workplace. Block came through loud and clear regarding customer advocacy.

Jane Seiling
Business Performance Group
Lima, Ohio

The Hunt for Next November

I read with interest Peter Block's column, "The Hunt for Next November", in the March 2000 issue. I agree with everything he said. However, I think perhaps he didn't go far enough.
     When I advocate the common good over individual interests, I get two responses: "Yes, I agree" and "So what?" I find that those who favor the common good have a broader perspective on the role of government than those that say "So what?" This broader perspective is more often expressed by people capable of viewing things from a systems perspective analogous to Block's "CEO's business literacy" from "Stewardship."
   One widespread view is that we have two groups in our society: the "haves" and the "have nots", and they are diverging. I believe we have a greater, and increasingly widening, gap between the "knows" and the "know nots." Further, I don't believe there is a very strong correlation between the "haves" and the "knows" as I have defined them above. I run into "haves" who are "know nots" all the time. In fact, it particularly upsets me to see "haves" support their special interests over the common good when the common good may even be in their best interest over the long run (Who wants to be imprisoned in a luxury gated community?).
  The more we "know not," the more we are susceptible to politicians' pandering to our individual interests because, to paraphrase "Stewardship", we don't have "the Nation's (or any other political unit's) CEO's political literacy." Perhaps the founding fathers had something when they limited the vote to certain "qualified" individuals (albeit with the wrong qualifications and for at least some of the wrong reasons).
  It's not the politicians' fault. Their behavior is rational and appropriate for our system in terms of their interests. They get elected because we can' t see the forest for the trees.
    I believe AQP would be the first to admit that participation works when the participants are qualified.

Pat Malone
Senior Program Director
Atlantic Management Center, Inc.
Falls Church, Va.

Distinguishing Ads from Content

Having just finished the July issue of News For A Change, particularly the "article" on Multivariable Testing, I am compelled to write. I kept looking for the disclaimer at the top saying "special advertising section." This was little more than a plug for QualPro. There was no usable material in the piece-no real explanation of the tool or how it would fit with broader change efforts. Please, do not include this kind of material in the future. But if you do, at least don't put it in the guise of an article. I hope QualPro paid for the full page ad they got.

Neil Samuels
Progress Director
BP Amoco Corp. Worldwide Exploration Business Group
Houston, Texas

We want your views on News for a Change!

  News for a Change brings you the latest information on how to improve business effectiveness in your organization. It is a benefit of AQP membership. We’d love to know what you think and invite your letters to the editor. Send comments, suggestions, reactions, gripes or questions to:
  Letters to the Editor /News for a Change /AQP, 2368 Victory Parkway, Executive Bldg., # 200,Cincinnati, Ohio 45206 or fax your comments to us at 513-381-0070,
e-mail us at, visit our Web site - and respond online
or call 1-800-388-7393, ext. 889. Your letters and comments may be edited
for space constraints. We know what we think about News for a Change,
now tell us what you think!

August 2000 NFC Homepage


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