The W. Edwards Deming Institute® Podcast


Keith Sparkjoy, Co-founder of Pluralsight discusses their Journey To “Seek The Truth”

This week's Deming Podcast features Keith Sparkjoy, Cofounder and Culture Coach of Pluralsight, a leader in professional training for developers through an online learning experience.

Keith discusses his "awakening" on their journey to keep Pluralsight's healthy culture as they rapidly expanded. The Deming philosophies provided hope and as he came to understand variation and a new way to look at leadership, the transition moved very quickly. From creating a system that focused on customer - eliminating incentive pay for managers, commissions for salespeople, and paid time off policies - to establishing only two rules to guide the company.

Listen as Keith explains their journey to "seek the truth", how they have been able to burst the bubble of management, build trust, drive out fear and get people to work together as Pluralsight "grows up."

Direct download: DemingEpisode14.m4a
Category:Interviews -- posted at: 9:14am PST

Monta Akin discusses Leander Independent School District's Transformation to "Happyville"

This week's podcast features Monta Akin, Assistant Superintendent for Leander Independent School District in Leander, Texas.

Monta shares her Deming journey and the compelling story of Leander Independent School District's transformation.  It begins when Monta was first introduced to Deming when she came across the PBS series "Quality or Else" featuring David Langford. What caught her attention was his Deming-based systematic approach to education, creating passion in students by engaging them in the practice of improvement. 

Serendipitously, the next day Monta picked up an educational magazine with information on a David Langford seminar. She rallied a few Leander colleagues to attend. It totally changed how they looked at instruction and the partnership with students. They realized that to be a great school district they would have to do something different. 

As they began adopting the Deming philosophies, Monta and her colleagues discovered how transparency built teamwork and realized the detrimental effect of fear, especially of teacher ratings. This led to a major change in how they conducted evaluations; a pivotal moment in their transformation. 

Monta shares the positive results at Leander independent School District, and why after more than 20 years, she is still passionately committed to the Deming philosophy.

Direct download: DemingEpisode13.m4a
Category:Interviews -- posted at: 3:04pm PST

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