Podcast #167 – Claire Crawford-Mason, Producer of Dr. W. Edwards Deming Videos



clare crawford mason

My guest for episode #167 is Clare Crawford-Mason, the producer of the landmark 1980 NBC documentary that featured W. Edwards Deming,  “If Japan Can Do It, Why Can't We?” You can view the documentary here.

I was fortunate to meet Clare and her husband Bob back in 2007 or so when I was teaching a Lean healthcare seminar near their home in Washington, DC. Clare and Bob led the efforts to create the “Deming Library” video series. They also created the PBS special “Good News: How Hospitals Heal Themselves” and the companion book The Nun and the Bureaucrat.

We've talked for years about doing this podcast and I'm glad to finally being able to share this with you. Early in the podcast, Clare talks about meeting Dr. Deming and the production of documentary, which is a fascinating story and glimpse into his personality and work.

Show notes and links:

For a link to this episode, refer people to www.leanblog.org/167.

The documentary:

For earlier episodes, visit the main Podcast page, which includes information on how to subscribe via RSS or via Apple Podcasts.

If you have feedback on the podcast, or any questions for me or my guests, you can email me at leanpodcast@gmail.com or you can call and leave a voicemail by calling the “Lean Line” at (817) 993-0630 or contact me via Skype id “mgraban”. Please give your location and your first name. Any comments (email or voicemail) might be used in follow ups to the podcast.

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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker, and podcaster with experience in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. Mark's new book is The Mistakes That Make Us: Cultivating a Culture of Learning and Innovation. He is also the author of Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More, the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, and the anthology Practicing Lean. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.


  1. Mark, this was a brilliant and very important podcast! Thanks for doing this, and thank Clare for sharing her thoughts. I found Clare’s insights and comments to be profound: we need to see systems, the linkage between western and eastern thinking, we need to think more “this and that” and not “either/or”. Her observations about how congress behaves (do not stay in Washington to get to know each other) is very insightful and important . Mike

  2. Thank you Mark; a delight to hear this fantastic interview with a living legend. Deming’s wisdom remains timeless and transcendent and Clare’s uncanny ability to distill and enhance our understanding and application of it in our lives and work adds to the fire of hope for humanity.


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