Deming Today explores how the theories and teachings of Dr. Deming are currently being put into practice by organizations in the US and around the world. What are their transformative experiences like? What challenges did they face along the way? What can a path of continual improvement lead to for a business, nonprofit, school, or government agency? Evolutionary or revolutionary, the stories, articles and blogs presented in Deming Today provide examples to inspire and encourage you and your organization to take the bold and often courageous steps in embracing and applying the Deming philosophy in your business or organization.
Enough is really enough. Gas pumps have an automatic shut-off to prevent us from overflowing the tank. The “click” we hear is fair warning. The “click” in real life takes its form as stress and burnout, leading to health conditions, accelerated aging and damaged relationships. These are all signs that we have not stopped pumping. Even at this point, some of us continue to go back and pump some more.
Bottlenecks are exacerbated because we are working in large batches. Our partner appears to be working in batches of 25. So what happens is we get nothing then all of the sudden we get a whole lot.
Also, it will impact us further down stream because the large clog just goes downstream. We’ve been talking about batches lately and the trouble of working with large ones. I even showed my manager the concept of single-piece flow. At first he was skeptical, but I think he began to see its merits.
Post on our Blog: W. Edwards Deming Discussing the Leadership We Need in Our Organizations
In the video Bill Schekenbach asks: Where could good management come from and Dr. Deming replies:
Adopt the attitude that they need to learn and that we can do it.
It must be developed. You certainly can’t import it.
So many think it is instant pudding. Just tell us what to do and we will do it.
Read our full post on our blog.
Why Your Employees Are Always Putting Out Fires by Elizabeth Doty
“Create constancy of purpose.” Without a sense of the bigger picture — what you are trying to accomplish and why it matters — people naturally default to fixing problems. Unfortunately, this approach never creates the level of delight or innovation that wins you customers for life. Deming encouraged managers to focus explicitly on a mission and longer-term goals to counter-balance the pull of immediate issues. This means defining clearly what you are promising to your customers, so employees know what they should strive to deliver. Even in highly dynamic environments, such a meaningful mission can provide constancy while tactics and strategies shift.
Without a clear and explicit articulation of our desired destination, the turbulence of the moment could end up taking our “flight” somewhere else. The late W. Edwards Deming, world-renowned quality expert, admonished us to create “constancy of purpose” or “aim” as part of any individual or organizational pursuit of continual improvement.
Post on our blog: How to Use Data and Avoid Being Mislead by Data
One of the four areas of Deming’s management system is “understanding variation.” The core principle underlying that concept is using data to improve while understanding what data is and is not telling you.
The mistakes in interpreting data are very often related to mistaking natural variation in data as meaningful. Combining this with our brains ability to find patterns (even from random data) and confirmation bias this creates problems.
How Not to be Wrong is an excellent book by Jordan Eilenberg on how to use math to avoid making mistakes.
Read the full Blog post: Using Outdated Management Practices Can Be Very Costly
Readers of this blog are aware of the problems created by using quotas: Achieved the goal by not the aim (2013) – The Futility of a Numerical Goal (2014), Distorting the System, Distorting the Data or Improving the System (2013), Dr. Deming on the problems with targets or goals.
Unfortunately, Wells Fargo recently has been dealing with the result of years of using such quotas as part of their management system...
Using TRIZ with Deming Philosophy by Ellen Domb and Bill Bellows
A Deming-based transformation is often a challenging road for organizations to travel, with ample opportunities for the organization to become detoured or even reverse course and chart a path back to the “prevailing system of management.” Organizations that have embraced Dr. Deming’s transformation have become models for successful change in many areas. These are the most likely organizations to adopt TRIZ and maintain application momentum. This offers a vast investment opportunity for many TRIZ practitioners.
Read the full article using the link above.
See the full Interview with Donald J. Wheeler by Dirk Dusharme
So, whether we call it the Shewhart cycle, the Deming cycle, [plan-do-check-act] PDCA, [plan-do-study-act] PDSA, or [define, measure, analyze, improve, control] DMAIC, Deming’s ideas are found at the heart of every effective improvement effort. Such ideas, like all profound truths, are eternally valid.
This also applies to the analysis of data. Since process behavior charts serve as an operational definition of how to get the most out of any process, they remain the foundation for successful process improvement. They work by highlighting those places and times when your process is changing, so that you can focus on these periods of change and discover the forces that affect your process.