Gentle Wind School Newsletters
 FEBRUARY 1, 1989 VOLUME 1 NUMBER 1 

Making a Better World

Do you think that the world needs improvement? If so, then consider this -- improvement only occurs in an environment in which improvement is the only viable alternative. Right now, neither business nor service professionals are subjected to any form of quality control. Businesses in every town are free to offer poor quality products and to mistreat customers with complete impunity. Physicians are free to misdiagnose patients, to offer them harmful and often useless drugs, and to insult them and humiliate them when they are sick and vulnerable, without any system of accountability.

Every community needs a Quality Control Center-- a place where people can call and register their complaints. A Quality Control Center could be a single phone line with an answering machine, and a few people who would be willing to tally the complaints and make this information available to the public. If people in your area had a Quality Control Center, they could find out which stores had the most complaints registered against them and something about the nature of those complaints. They could find out similar information about doctors and lawyers and other service professionals which could be extremely helpful in choosing a physician or a dentist.

If you would like to open a Quality Control center in your community, here are a few simple guidelines:

  1. Let the people of your area know what you are doing. List your Quality Control phone line in easy to find places.
  2. Remember that a certain number of people are never satisfied, so everyone should receive a similar number of complaints called the floor of random complaints.
  3. Note that 2 or 3 businesses or physicians will rise up out of that floor with larger numbers of complaints.
  4. Some people could try to abuse the service. Smith's Hardware company, for example, could register a large number of complaints against the Jones' Hardware Company. Error checking can be done with a postcard to the person registering the complaint.
  5. Take into consideration the size of the business. Let us say that Smith has 3,000 square feet of space while Jones has 1,000 square feet. Smith potentially draws more customers and should register more complaints.
  6. Wait a full year before publishing your results in order to let the random floor of complaints settle, and to allow the few who show more additional complaints to rise up out of that floor.

We suggest that Quality Control Centers begin by evaluating the physicians in each community. The fact that a person has an M.D. after his or her name does not make that person a good doctor. Most physicians today have entered the practice of medicine for the money. Many doctors are much more interested in receiving a call from their stockbrokers than from their patients. People rarely question a physician's competence or effectiveness, and often feel humiliated and intimidated by a simple office visit. Some physicians in this country should have to wear a warning label that reads: "Treatment by this physician could be hazardous to your health." Let us stop grading young, vulnerable children who need our support--not our grades; and let us start grading the businesses and "service" professionals that could use our grades in order to improve the quality of their efforts.