One Main Cause of Problems

January 04 2021
By: Terry L. Mathis

The late W. Edwards Deming wisely observed that "One of the main causes of problems is solutions." He had witnessed people, often well-intentioned, attempt to solve a problem and cause multiple others with their solutions. I fear that is exactly what we have done with our attempts to solve the COVID-19 crisis.

One Main Cause of Problems We quarantined ourselves and shut down places where we gather in an effort to minimize deaths from the pandemic. In doing so, we have likely caused more deaths than the virus will take through our actions. Estimates are that increased suicides and overdoses will outnumber pandemic deaths. Starvations from the cessation of regular business and travel will dwarf all these according to some experts. The loss of small business will seriously impact families who have invested their lives in establishing them. Schools will struggle to maintain levels of education and students will not be able to regain what they lost in their off time from classroom activities.

When leaders finally boast that they have solved the pandemic emergency, examine the collateral casualties before offering congratulations.

Terry L. Mathis

Terry Mathis, Founder and retired CEO of ProAct Safety, has served as a consultant and advisor for top organizations the world over. A respected strategist and thought leader, Terry has authored five books, numerous articles, videos and blogs, and is known for his dynamic and engaging presentations. EHS Today has named him one of the '50 People Who Most Influenced EHS' four consecutive times. Business leaders and safety professionals seek Terry's practical insight and unique ability to introduce new perspectives that lead to real change.

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