Doug Hall on Using Systems Thinking to Power Strategy, Innovation and Growth

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By John Hunter, founder of

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In this podcast (download), Doug Hall, CEO and founder of Innovation Engineering and Eureka! Ranch shares his approach for taking Dr. Deming’s ideas systems thinking and applying that to strategy, innovation and growth.

Doug shares the story of how his father introduced him to Dr. Deming and systems thinking in the late 1970’s. Doug’s father worked at Nashua Corporation, which was one of the early corporate adopters of Dr. Deming’s philosophies. Later Doug took that systems mindset to the Proctor and Gamble brand management department.

We found it to be extremely difficult to get teams to stay with it [PDSA]. They would do it once [one cycle through the PDSA cycle] and then just blow it off.

In the podcast Doug talks about their strategies for helping people use PDSA (instead of avoiding it). I strongly suggest anyone interesting in using the PDSA cycle well read and continually reference, The Improvement Guide.

As Doug says it is often a challenge to get organizations to systemically experiment to achieve improvement but when they do, using the PDSA cycle, results can be exceptional.

Related: Deming Podcast with Bob Mason and Clare Crawford-MasonOne-Piece-Flow Projects Create the Best Conditions for True Creativity

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