"The Cloud" is a metaphor for the top level of corporate authority - the CEO, CFO, CTO and maybe some Vice President positions. And if you're trying to transform an organization, your ideas need to penetrate the Cloud - but how? In this episode, Bill Bellows and host Andrew Stotz talk about influencing others with the aim of transformation. 


0:00:02.2 Andrew Stotz: My name is Andrew Stotz, and I'll be your host as we continue our journey into the teachings of Dr. W. Edwards Deming. Today, I'm continuing my discussion with Bill Bellows, who has spent 30 years helping people apply Dr. Deming's ideas to become aware of how their thinking is holding them back from their biggest opportunities. Today is episode 16, and the title is, Get Off of My Cloud. Bill, take it away.


0:00:29.5 Bill Bellows: Hey. Hey, hey. [laughter] Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, get Off of My Cloud. Yeah. Alright, so here we are, 2024. So before we get to the Cloud, some opening remarks. And in particular looking at session 15, which is soon to be released. And one thing I... What I tell people is, what's exciting about understanding Deming's work is how revealing, how you see the world differently, and Dr. Deming used the metaphor of a lens. But it's not only what you see, but what you hear.


0:01:19.5 AS: Right.


0:01:22.3 BB: And, and I tell people I can go into an organization and within a few minutes between what I see and what I hear, I can get a pretty good sense, is it a ME or WE organization. And we think back to the comment I shared in episode 15 where the Boeing executive said, "Let's be honest," to the room full of 300 plus internal audit people who just do great, great work.


0:01:54.4 BB: I mean, if they didn't do great work, why would they be there? Everyone in our organization does great work, otherwise, why would they be around? But when they said to them, "Let's be honest, we don't make the airplanes." And I thought, that's right up there with my wife saying to me, "Look at what your son did."


0:02:22.4 BB: My son? Or is it, look at what our son did. Another giveaway expression is, we're gonna do a root cause analysis or RRCA, which is Relentless Root Cause Analysis. Well, every, and from a Deming perspective, instead of talking about a root cause, we can say there's root causes, and there's... They're dozens, hundreds of root causes, or sorry, common causes, common causes. And then every now and then there's a special cause.


0:03:01.0 BB: But even when a special cause appears so does a bunch of common causes. So from a Deming perspective there's never a root cause. So I... One poke I have for people that like to think in terms of root cause, 'cause they have this sense of, you can explain everything by a series of connected root causes. This cause leads... It's like the five whys. That this leads to this leads to this. But it's always, this leads to that, this leads to, and it's singular strands. And I think of it like a strand of spaghetti and everything is along some pathway. And I thought, no, that's not the model Deming had in mind. Deming had in mind a multitude of strands that are all woven together that you can't... What comes out is a bunch of contributions, not just one thing. So my poke at people like to believe in root cause phenomenon is, "If life can be explained by a series of root causes, then why do you need two parents? Why isn't it a single parent?" Sorry.


0:04:18.9 BB: I just finished the fifth cohort at Cal State Northridge in a eight-week class as part of an 18-month program where the students, we start with about 30, by the time it gets to me there may be 24 or so. And one course after another, after another, it's a very rigorous program. And I do a class called Seminar in Quality Management. And I love at the beginning of the course when I ask them about, if all the beads are red, if all the red beads are eliminated, can improvement, can still go on to, all those things we've talked about in this program. And I have them write essays on it, and it's so neat to see where they are in the beginning and where they are at the end.


0:05:07.1 BB: And in the beginning they'll be talking about human error. And so every time I see human error, I just write back, is it human error or is it system error? And one student in the class commented at the end of the course of what she learned, she said, No one had ever pointed that out to her. And she distinctly remembers the very first time I said that it was like, but wait a minute. And then it made more and more sense and I thought, yeah, I mean not... Is there such a thing as a human error? Well, Deming would say that 94 plus percent comes from the system. Another cute story, I used to host a monthly conference call for 17 years, every month for 17 years.


0:06:02.0 AS: Wow.


0:06:02.8 BB: And featured on the call was a thought leader, Russ Ackoff did it four years in a row. He became the January thought leader. And generally it was random, different people. But then when it got to Russ, it was every January Russ did it. And I would go out and stay with him and be in the room with him and the distribution list was at one point in time, 5000 people around the world, that I had somehow interacted with. And the announcement would go off out every month, and it would say, this month's ongoing discussion with thought leaders, is Andrew Stotz, Andrew's gonna talk on this topic. Please find attached his thought piece. You can join us. And there were four opportunities to call in on 12 to one and one to two on the last Thursday and Friday of the month. And there was four different opportunities for the audience to engage with Andrew, and it wasn't a presentation by you. The protocol was they would read the article, then they would say to you, Andrew, on page five, you said this can you clarify? So I said to them, it's not a presentation, it's a conversation.


0:07:08.9 BB: So a friend had in mind, somebody that he worked with as a thought leader. I said, okay, let me, She'd just written a book. And the book title was along the lines of Think Like a Champion, so I read the book and it's sports stories, all these sports stories. Turns out she has an advanced degree in sports psychology and she was hired by his company as a coach. And throughout the book, her story is about people contacting her, I need help with this. I need help with this. I need help with this. A lot of these people are in sales, I need help, I need help with this. So I read the book cover to cover, and I started to notice a pattern. It was all individuals. I need help, I need help. And so when I got on the phone with her and the role of the phone call was to talk about the book, talk about the phone call, let her know what the overall strategy of what we're trying to do with these calls, promote a word as of Deming's work and working together, all that stuff.


0:08:20.6 BB: And then with that, see if that fit, what if she felt, in fact, what I had in mind was that there's things in there she could contribute, but there's things in there that might be slippery. So I shared with her that I had a friend who was a high school coach for the Valencia Vikings and I bumped to him one day in a park. And he's walking towards me and he is wearing a T-shirt, and across the top are the letters V-K-N-G-S. So I'm looking at the letters and I said, I don't get it. To which the author says, there's no I in team, and that's what it was V-K-N-G-S. And so she beat me to the punchline. So I said, so you're aware of that story?


0:09:15.0 BB: She says, oh yeah. I said, "Your book is filled with sports stories." She says, "Yes." I said, "Did you ever consider that story for the book?" She says, "it really wouldn't fit." I said, "that's right." I said, "that is it, it doesn't." I said, "'cause your book is all about the I and not about the team." So at the end of the call, I said you know, when I got your book, I said the cover was revealing. And this is what I find, going back to language. You can be in a meeting and you can hear how people think, which then leads to how they act and you can't separate, you can hear that. So I said, "I looked at title of your book," which is something like, Think Like A Champion. And I said, "as soon as I saw that title," I thought. But I said, well I told her, "I said, there's a lot of good stuff in here." I said, "but, and I'm not saying everyone hears what I hear, but I don't want you to be caught short on that." She said okay. So then I said the title was kind of a giveaway of what the book was really about. She said, "well, what would've been a more appropriate title?" I said, "Think Like a Contributor."


0:10:34.5 BB: And so we are within our respective organizations, we're one of many contributors, we don't do it all by ourself, we contribute to the results and we talked last time about... Sorry.


0:10:47.1 AS: And that's an interesting point because that's a, maybe a difference between let's say American style thinking and Japanese style thinking, where Japanese may see themselves clearly as a contributor in a system. Whereas Americans, we like to think of ourselves as a unique person that fits into a certain place in this world.


0:11:08.9 BB: And I won the game, I won the game and I made it happen. And, um, but sure, and I've heard that about Japanese management, that it's more like, I am humbled and honored to be your executive and there's a real... And it comes across that it's not just talk, there's a real sense of humility and honor to be in this position as opposed to a sense of I'm the smartest guy in the room.


0:11:39.4 AS: Servant Leader.


0:11:41.4 BB: Yes, very much so. So, next thing I wanna bring up is, we talked last time about Myron Tribus's his comment, management works on the system, people work in the system, and the theme was making a difference from where you are and I mentioned that this gentleman came in, was one of our classes, and he wanted to, how often I met with our president. And I said, not very often. He said, oh, it's really important, you gotta go meet with him. And I said, "well what if I spent time talking with senior people at NASA or senior people in the Pentagon," which I did. And a mistake I made, a minor perhaps a minor error that somebody may or may not have caught. So I said, that I had the distinct pleasure of being invited to speak at the Army's largest annual logistics conference back in the 2000s. And the invite came from a senior officer on the staff of General Anne Dunwoody, who went on to become the Army's first woman, Four Star General, and so in the podcast number 15 I said, I was invited and spoke with the Army's first Four Star General, it was the Army's first woman Four Star general.


0:12:57.2 BB: So this is a clarification. I also talk about how pragmatism is being practical, but I think is, if you're trying to introduce these ideas into your respective organizations making a difference where you are, I think it's important to realize that everyone is acting as if they're being practical. And if practical means work on things that are bad to make them good and stopping, that’s their, that to them is practical. Now, from a Deming perspective to not work on things that are good, to make them better to improve integration - that is practical, but it might not be practical where you are. And I mentioned, I had a Lean Management journal article that talked about that, and I couldn't remember the title. The title is Profits, Pragmatism, and the Possibilities of Possessing Other Eyes. I told you I like alliteration.


0:13:56.6 AS: Alliteration.


0:13:57.5 BB: Alright, so what is an application? We start where you are. And I would say an application, first of all, relative to an application, it's thinking, can I do this by myself? Do I need help? Do I see opportunities to reduce losses? And it's one thing to see opportunities to do something. It's a whole 'nother thing to realize that the timing might not be right. I may not have the support that I need. I may not have the funding that I need. There could be other priorities. So when I would tell people I was mentoring to see opportunities is a really big thing, whatever those are. An opportunity to shift from managing actions to managing interactions and realizing that addition doesn't work, that things are not adding up and you're realizing, holy cow, there's some opportunities for synergy here. There's opportunities to work on things which are going well to prevent the red beads, work on things that are well to improve integration.


0:15:05.3 BB: There could be opportunities to stop doing incentives within your sphere of influence, to stop handing out awards to your people on your staff. Had a friend who just became a manager years ago and I had been mentoring him and within a few weeks of him being manager in operations, he came to me and he said that somebody on his team helped him do something and he gave him a $10 lunch coupon. I didn't say anything, I just let it pass. A couple weeks later, he comes to me and he says the same guy helped him again and then reached out his hand, he says, “Where’s my coupon?” I said, “I was waiting to see how long that would take.” And Andrew, that happened 25 years ago, if I was to have breakfast with him tomorrow, it would come up. Every time we meet, which is not that often, he lives a lot too far.


0:16:05.5 BB: And it was just so cool how, as I said let’s just see how this goes. So the idea is that what can you do from where you are to not pass on the pain? And so it may be flowing down to you, but maybe you, if you’ve got a team, can stop it from where you are. Maybe. Maybe you can’t. I mentioned Jim Albaugh, who went on to become CEO of Boeing Commercial, CEO of Boeing Defense. He was my boss for a number of years at the beginning of his doing these amazing things. And one day after we had some really stellar applications of Taguchi’s ideas with Deming’s improving integration, the hammers went away and things came together. Performance, we had an incredible advances in engine performance and integration. It was really cool. So he was really thrilled by all that. So I go, I would meet with him once a month and I’d poke him.


0:17:10.0 BB: So one day I went in and I said, “I wanna bring something to your attention.” And he looks at me with this smile. And I said, “I wanna put something on the table. And I’m not saying you’ve gotta do it now, but don’t ever tell me I didn’t bring it to your attention.” And he is like, “okay, Bill, what?” [chuckle] I said, “we’ve got to get rid of incentives, rewards and recognition and performance appraisals.” And then he just rolls his eyes. I said, I says, “I know you can’t do this.” And I said, “but these are ankle weights on how fast we can run as an organization.” But I knew that was... I mean, he was, at the time he was a VP, even when he was CEO, he can’t get rid of those. Those are such an institution. But I just wanted to go on record with him. I just chose the moment to go on record with him knowing the limits, but I wanted to be upfront and honest with him that if I don’t go to those events, this is why.


0:18:18.8 BB: And so it’s just making a difference from where you are and sometimes you speak up, sometimes you just keep your mouth shut. Another thing I encourage people I mentor is, if you’re out managing interactions and things are improving, you’ve improved integration. Is that, my advice to them is go about it quietly be the change you wanna see in your organization. Be the change you wanna see in the world, to quote Gandhi, I said, but unless your boss asks you how that happened, don’t explain it to them.


0:18:53.2 BB: I said, if they ask you how did you know how to do that, that’s your opportunity. But if you’re not asked that, I mean, in other words, don’t do it expecting to be asked for what, you know, to be complimented. You do it because it’s the right thing to do. Use it as a learning experience. Be deliberate about it if you’re gonna go off and do it. But if you’re doing it to get praise, you’ve missed the whole point. If you’re doing it to get your boss’s attention, you’ve missed the whole point. What I tell people is, do it’ And maybe at some point in time, they say, ’'ve noticed a pattern. Tell me how you do this. ’I've got a manager I work with, with a client, was asking me about how to praise someone. And I said, one is, there’s nothing wrong with one-on-one in the office saying, your contributions were enormous. I said, do’'t ever imply without you, we could not have done this. You’re a contributor. But I said, more important than that is, ask them, how did you know how to do that? Where else could we apply this?


0:20:07.4 BB: I said, I think that is far more, I think being asked those questions are far more thrilling than a pat on the back. Back in ‘93, it was '92, I was nominated to be an engineer of the year at the Rocketdyne, which is a really big deal. I was one of a dozen finalists. And the vice president of engineering invited everyone into his office to ask us a bunch of questions. And he used our answers for the engineer of the year dinner. And what I found out from the others is, he never asked any of us, how can your work, what is your vision, Andrew, for how your work can impact the organization? And I thought that, that never came up. And I would have been thrilled, my whole interest in going through this, 'cause I knew at that time about awards and recognition, but my hope was that, that could create visibility and help me further the cause.


0:21:13.8 AS: Make an impact.


0:21:14.8 BB: This is... But another thing I would say is, I have my knuckles rapped this way a few times. And when I would try to explain to the executives how we achieve these solutions. And once one of the VPs, my VP, his comment to me was, he was watching me, he came by to see the slides I was gonna use. And he says, Bill, don't be tutorial with us. And I thought, oh, man. So what I tell people is, a staff meeting is not the time. This is really important. If you're trying to explain in a staff meeting how you accomplish something, what makes it bad is, even if you're invited, a staff meeting is not a classroom. When I walk into a classroom as the instructor, I walk in, and I know what my role is, and everybody else knows what their role is. But when you walk into a staff meeting, and you're about to present something you did, if it comes across as being tutorial, what makes that offending is, who appointed you to be the professor? But if you have a separate meeting and, but it's just these nuances, can really get in the way, which leads to tonight's feature, the Cloud Model...


0:22:42.6 AS: Before you go to tonight's feature, I'd like to go back in time to November of 1965. It was a tumultuous year. In fact, it was February of 1965 that Malcolm X was assassinated in America. 1963, November, John F. Kennedy Jr. Was assassinated. America was going through a lot of turmoil, and the Rolling Stones were the bad boys of rock and roll. In November of 1965, I was four months old, so I don't remember this personally, but the Rolling Stones came out with a song, and it was called Get Off Of My Cloud. And I just wanted to put it in context, because for us older guys, we know that this lyrics, Get Off Of My Cloud, is referring to this song where they're oftentimes saying, "hey, hey, you, you, get Off Of my Cloud." So with that introduction, tell us why you named it, this episode, Get Off Of My Cloud.


0:23:44.3 BB: Well, you're not gonna believe how apropos that, that intro was. Oh, this is so cool. It's so cool, so cool. In 1995, I met Barry Bebb, a retired, very senior executive from Xerox, who was on a very short list to be the next CEO of Xerox after David Kearns. And Barry left Xerox and became a consultant, and I met him in the Taguchi community. And somewhere in the beginning of '95, I bumped into him. I'd met him earlier at another event with Dr. Taguchi, and, um, and then there was an event in LA, a conference, and I bumped into him, and he said, hey, I know that guy. We knew each other. And he said, hey, I'm putting together this group of people, about a dozen or so people, a couple from Ford, a couple from GM.


0:24:46.7 BB: Would you like to be part of it? I was like, well, what do you have in mind? He said, "we're gonna to meet once a quarter. I wanna mentor you and help you create change within your respective organizations." And it's like "sign me up." And I was there with a very good friend, Tim Higgins, and so we signed up. And we... Barry called the group Impact 95 'cause it was 1995. And we would get together all day Friday, all day Saturday, through Sunday at noon. We would meet either within Ford, because there was a Ford member, within GM. There was a printer company we met at their headquarters, at their site.


0:25:28.7 BB: We met at Rocketdyne. We'd meet in San Diego with Barry. But once a quarter for three and a half years, we met, all on our own time. The company didn't pay for this. I told Tim, we're just gonna go off. We're not gonna tell anybody what we're doing. But what we learned from Barry is how to create change from an organization when you're in the bottom, you're an individual contributor. And so that... And I've got the notes. I've got a big pile of notes. And some of the things that jumped out when I was pulling my notes together are things we learned in that very first session. One is you can't tell anybody anything. He said, "You can lead people on a path to discover, but you can't force them to drink." And that became really powerful that, telling people something's important is a losing strategy. So what I find powerful about the Me and the We Trip Report, Red Pen, Blue Pen, whatever it is, that's not me telling people what the organization is about. That's them telling me what the organization is about.


0:26:43.7 BB: But trying to tell people this Deming stuff will change your life, that's a losing strategy. So he says, you can't tell anybody anything. And then my paraphrase is, "telling is a losing strategy." Even if you tell a loved one. If I tell our daughter, Allison, you gotta go watch this movie. You gotta go... You need to go learn more about the Rolling Stones. She's like "Dad, I'm a Swifty." It's like her telling me, "well, I'll go do that if you go watch the Eras movie with Taylor Swift." I'm thinking, "that ain't gonna happen." But anyway, so even with a loved one telling, telling is a losing strategy. Well, another thing he told us that very first meeting, you're gonna love this. He said, he points at each one of those and he's like a drill sergeant, and he says to us, "you have to be able to do this by any means necessary." You know who used those words, right?


0:27:43.8 AS: Malcolm X.


0:27:44.9 BB: Malcolm X. I remember looking at Barry saying, said that's Malcolm X. He says, and he would say, "every morning you've gotta get up and ask yourself, am I doing everything I can to make a difference in our organization?" And it was just beaten into us again and again and again and again in a very loving way. So back to the, "hey, you Get Off Of My Cloud." Barry came up with a Cloud Model. And I don't know that he had in mind to write a book about it. I don't know that he ever did. I don't know if it was ever published. I have not, I share this in all of my classes and all my consulting. I share it with clients. I'm not sure if it's out there on the internet. Well, what Barry had in mind, his model, his mental model for organizations is there's a Cloud.


0:28:31.7 BB: The Cloud is the top of the organization where all the executives are. And Barry got to the Cloud. He was in charge of Xerox's division that made the, not office copiers, but these really big, big things. And, um, and I don't know how many thousands people worked for him, but he was in the Cloud and he's briefing us. And we're individual contributors in our respective organizations. And what brought us together was each of us was trying to introduce Dr. Taguchi's ideas into our organization. But the Cloud model is universal. It's not just, it's introducing any change in our organization. And what Barry confided with us, and it kind of burst our bubble is, he said, if you get an email that says, we want you next Monday, Bill Bellows, to go to Boeing headquarters and share with them how Dr. Taguchi's work can impact Boeing.


0:29:31.7 BB: And I'd be thinking, "what an incredible opportunity." What I learned from Barry was you have to say no. And I'd be like "well, Barry, isn't that the audience I want?" And he says "no." "Why not, Barry?" He said, "here's how it works." He said, "the people in the Cloud may not like each other, but they respect each other." He said, if you're...


0:29:56.3 AS: And the people in the Cloud, remind everybody who are the people in the Cloud?


0:30:00.2 BB: The top executives of the organization are the Cloud. So that's the...


0:30:05.4 AS: They're living in a, they're living maybe in a comfy zone. They're not necessarily dealing with the nitty gritty of the business, what's going on.


0:30:13.7 BB: They're way up there in the upper atmosphere. They are... And they're the chief executive people, the senior most people in the organization. And what Barry said is, "they create the rain. They create the KPIs. They create all those things that flow down." And what Barry says, "what we're tryna do is influence what flows down. So in order to influence what flows down, you've got to get into the Cloud." He said, but the deal is, what Barry's model was, "Bill and Tim and Larry, you can't go to the Cloud." Well, why not? He said, "because you're an outsider." And he said, "they shoot outsiders, but they don't shoot each other."


0:31:02.8 BB: So what do we do? He said, "when you go back to your respective organizations," this is the very first time we meet, this is how impactful it was. He said, "when you go back to your respective organizations, start thinking about someone in your organization above you. It doesn't have to be your boss. It could be somebody over to the right, but find someone above you that you can get smart about Taguchi's work, about Deming's work, about whatever that passion is that you wanna bring to the organization to rain down. Get them smart, 'cause you can't go to the Cloud, but you can get them smart. So make it your calling to go back to work, begin to meet with someone above you. Help them get someone above them smart. Help them get somebody..." So I, I hand, I get you smart, and then I help you get your boss smart, and then you're...your boss on up. So you have to hand off. So this is not me coaching you, and then coaching you all the way. So I have to let go. I have to be a contributor.


0:32:17.5 BB: And I thought that's not what I... I thought I could be the hero and go in there. And he is like, no, it won't work. And so I went back and immediately began to mentor my boss, Jim Albaugh, who's a VP. And that was my, my strategy was to get him smart on all the things we were doing. And then he, in turn, eventually got his boss, Alan Mulally smart. And I just, but you have to let go. And then you're trying to influence the organization - so it can be done. So in terms of making difference from where you are, it's not running into the Cloud from down there and thinking, Hey, I've got these great ideas. And what Barry said is, it's not gonna work. Don't. And he saw it not work on many occasions.


0:33:08.9 BB: Now, one time I got invited to a Boeing corporate setting, and it was not, it was halfway to the Cloud. It was pretty high up. And my first thought was, No. This, you know, Barry on my shoulder, Barry says, "Bill, don't do it. Bill, don't do it." When I found out who's gonna be in the meeting, and it was all the VPs of engineering across Boeing, space and communications, and they all reported up to the VP of engineering, corporate, senior VP of engineering, who reported to Jim Albaugh. So I thought, okay, against my better judgment, I went in. But being aware of Barry's model, I went around the room and amongst the nine VPs of engineering, I knew half of them. So I went around the room,, and hi, how're you doing?


0:34:14.8 BB: I haven't seen you. And part of what I was doing in my mind, what I was doing was preparing them to help me should the others start to shoot at me. But I knew to do that. And without the awareness from Barry, I would not have known to go around the room. So it was... I mean, it wasn't the very, very top of Boeing. It was a good ways up. But I still took what I learned from Barry and said, okay, I need some help with this. I can contribute, but I'm just gonna stop there.


0:34:56.3 AS: Well...


0:34:56.4 BB: And so when it comes to this, Get Off Of my Cloud, it's the people in the Cloud, it's their Cloud. We just work here.


0:35:04.9 AS: And in the theme of music I'm gonna wrap up my part of this and then ask you to do a final wrap up. I wanna go now to 1976. 11 years after the Rolling Stones came out with their song, Get Off Of My Cloud. By this time I was 11 years old. And in 1976, the band, the Canadian Band, Rush came out with the album 2112. And the song 2112 talks about how, Neil Peart wrote this, the drummer, about how he, that it was a society he liked to show it was like a communist type of society where it was ruled by the elders. And he found a guitar, and it was an ancient guitar, and nobody had heard of a guitar. And he figured out how to play it. And he thought it would be amazing to take this to the priests, to the elders.


0:35:57.4 AS: And he went to them after learning how to play. And he said, "I know it's most unusual to come before you, so, but I found an ancient miracle. I thought that you should know. Listen to my music and hear what it can do. There's something here as strong as life, I know that it will reach you." And the priests respond. The priests in unison respond, "yes, we know it's nothing new. It's just a waste of time. We have no way need for ancient ways. Our world is doing fine. Another toy that helped destroy dah, dah dah, dah, dah." The point is that they were in their comfort zone and they didn't want to be disturbed. And so having an awareness of that, I think is what you're trying to teach us so that when we, make a change where we are and be an influencer rather than a teller. And don't use the telling strategy.


0:36:54.2 BB: Yeah, no, it's... Exactly. It's, um, I had a VP of HR once pulled me aside and he said, "what's your vision for the organization?" I said, "don't ask me." I said, "ask them, ask them." I said, "it's not what I want" is, and this is, I told another group of people I was mentoring. I said, something like this. "I'm not gonna be here forever." 'Cause they're saying, "well, what should we do?" And I said, "my question to you is what do you want to happen?"


0:37:36.3 BB: And what was so amazing when I shared that with this one group, a couple of days later, two of them sent out an email to a bunch of their peers with announcing some opportunities. And I had tears in my eyes. I was reading it on an airplane. I was at LAX and looking at it. And what blew me away was, they didn't call me up and say, Hey, we have an idea. They just went out and did it. They became the change they wanted to see amongst their peers. And I was just overwhelmed with it all. All I said to them, is that, "what do you want? What is it that you want this place to be?" I said, "it's not what I want. It's what do you want?" But the other thing is I'll share some great wisdom from Edward de Bono. And this is the book, Handbook for the Positive Revolution. You can buy it on Amazon for probably 5 bucks. And the original copy, I'm told, this is not an original, it has a yellow cover, and there's significance there that I'll come back to, but what somebody told me is the original book not only was the cover yellow, but all the pages were yellow. Well, yellow in the Edward de Bono world is associated with one of the six colors of his so-called Thinking Hats, and yellow is the Logical Positive. Your ability to explain the benefits of something. Not your gut feel, which would be your Red Hat, but your Yellow Hat is saying, I can articulate the benefits. The Black Hat is the Logical Negative, I could tell you all the weaknesses.


0:39:29.8 BB: So this is coming from that place of yellowness. So the book came out, and I got it for a bunch of colleagues in our InThinking transformation community at Rocketdyne early on. And the introduction, Edward says, "this is a serious revolutionary handbook. The greatest strength of this serious revolution is that it will not be taken seriously." So when I'm reading that, I'm thinking, "what?" Then he goes on and he says, "there is no greater power than to be effective and not to be taken seriously." That way, Andrew, you can quietly go on with things without the fuss and friction or resistance from those who feel threatened. And that was so invaluable to our efforts is, if people don't take it seriously, fine. 'Cause what Barry talked about is, he said, "for every proponent," as you're trying to get this message to the Cloud, he said, "for every proponent, he'd say there's nine opponents." So they're out there. So as I'm trying to get my boss smart, you've got this. And I come across Edward's work, and he says, you just take it in stride. You just try not to be dissuaded. You get up every day and say, what can I do? And how do you get to the Cloud?


0:41:14.2 AS: Bam. Well, Bill, on behalf of everyone at the Deming Institute, I wanna thank you again for this discussion. And for listeners, remember, go to deming.org to continue your journey. And if you wanna keep in touch with Bill, just find him on LinkedIn. He's there. This is your host, Andrew Stotz. And I'll leave you with one of my favorite quotes from Dr. Deming. People are entitled to joy in work.

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