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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.

Gipsie Ranney

Post on our Blog: Gipsie Ranney

Sadly, we have to announce the passing of our dear friend Gipsie Ranney on March 7th. Gipsie Ann Bush Ranney was born in Kingsport, Tennessee to Raymond and Lola Bush.

Gipsie Ranney

Gipsie Ranney was the first president of The W. Edwards Deming Institute. A resident of Brentwood, Tennessee and an avid supporter of the Nashville Symphony, Gipsie was an international consultant to organizations on management, quality improvement and statistical methodology. She co-authored Beyond Total Quality Management: Toward the Emerging Paradigm, and also contributed to Competing Globally Through Customer Value.

In appreciation of her “outstanding contribution in advancing the theory and practice of statistical thinking to the management of enterprises worldwide,” the American Society for Quality awarded her the Deming Medal for 1996.

Read the full post on our blog.

More is Not Always Better

Doing a little more is not always doing your best by J. Gerald Suarez

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.

Implementing Change Using Kanban

Dan BImplementing Change Using Kanban

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.

image of a kanban whiteboard with post it notes

W. Edwards Deming Discussing the Leadership We Need in Our Organizations

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

Why Your Employees Are Always Putting Out Fires by Elizabeth Doty


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.

How to Stay the Course Amid Constant Turbulence

How to stay the course amid constant turbulence by J. Gerald Suarez

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.

How to Use Data and Avoid Being Mislead by Data

image of book coverPost 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.

Agile Africa 2016 Talk: Why we owe so much to Dr Deming

Presentation by Simon Stewart, Code Skills, at Agile Africa 2016: Why we owe so much to Dr Deming

Bad Management Practice: Sales Quotas

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...

"numerical goals set for other people, without a road map to reach the goal, have effects opposite to the effects sought." W. Edwards Deming

Using the Theory of Inventive Problem Solving (TRIZ) with the Deming Philosophy

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.