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Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Five

Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Five

Deming Principle #12: Abolish the Annual Performance Review states that number twelve is, “12. Remove barriers that rob people in management and in engineering of their right to pride of workmanship. This means, inter alia, abolishment of the annual or merit rating and of management by objective.”

Deming was exceedingly against the annual performance review, and so am I. Workers should be evaluated on their work in the midst of day-to-day operations. Most often, the annual performance review is degrading and negative for workers. It causes them anxiety waiting to have their review, and it is discouraging to hear so many negative statements about your work all at once. The annual performance review should be abolished, and workers should be informed as time goes on how they are doing and what they can do to improve. Management should not wait until one day out of the year to have these important conversations. Why not assist a worker to work towards improvements, encouraging him/her along the way? Help them to see what is hampering their ability to reach the company’s objectives and kindly guide them toward efficiency and accuracy in completing tasks.

Deming Principle #13: Educate & Give Employees Opportunities for Growth in the Areas They Want to Grow states that principle number thirteen is, “13. Institute a vigorous program of education and self-improvement.”

Some employees have great promise and capability. By constantly educating them and finding ways for the employee to gain skills, that employee has a high likelihood of succeeding. Ask that employee, “What do you want to do? What are your goals while you are here?” Show them you have interest in them, not just their work skills. Essentially, you are trying to maximize that person’s potential. Even if you lose them as an employee one day, you will gain the trust and respect of your employees that much faster and that much more when you encourage them to be who they are. Workers who feel respected and cared for by their superiors will be that much more loyal to the company, and your likelihood of turnover will decrease.

Deming Principle #14: Everybody Has a Piece to the Puzzle

Finally, states principle number fourteen is, “14. Put everybody in the company to work to accomplish the transformation. The transformation is everybody’s job.”

People in leadership positions can never say, “Here is our plan,” and then disengage. This will not optimize the plan to work the best it can for the company. Leaders needs to treat creating the plan as one piece to the puzzle. Then, when leaders talk about the plan with employees, they will be engaged, too. This will teach the workers to take more responsibility for their pieces of the puzzle. Each person in the company has a piece of the puzzle, and each person needs to take responsibility for finding where it fits into the greater picture.

The Deming Principles not only help me to do management consulting, but they also helps me to mentor others and lead a life of responsibility and ownership. It helps me to counsel others how to lead a better, more fulfilling life. I encourage you to take these principles to heart and learn all that they have to offer. You can always use their advice, whether in business, relationships, or personal endeavors.

Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Four

Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Four

W. Edwards Deming created the 14 Deming Principles to describe a way to manage companies. Here’s an elaboration on principles nine through eleven.

Deming Principle #9: Switch it Up When It’s “Us vs. Them” in the Office states that number nine is, “9. Break down barriers between departments. People in research, design, sales, and production must work as a team, to foresee problems of production and in use that may be encountered with the product or service.”

He’s seen a worker staff and office staff; the one doesn’t understand the other. He’s had one group do the other group’s job to understand the other’s job. Everytime he sees “us vs them” in the company, he has people swap jobs to experience what it is like on the other side. This creates compassion amongst the employees and a sense of kindness when dealing with one another, because they understand how the other is feeling and what the other has to handle.

Deming Principle #10: Objectives Need to Be Broken Up Into Tasks states that number ten is, “10. Eliminate slogans, exhortations, and targets for the work force asking for zero defects and new levels of productivity. Such exhortations only create adversarial relationships, as the bulk of the causes of low quality and low productivity belong to the system and thus lie beyond the power of the work force. Eliminate work standards (quotas) on the factory floor. Substitute leadership. Eliminate management by objective. Eliminate management by numbers, numerical goals.”

So many companies that manage their staff based on objectives and reaching certain numbers manage by targets. If a company says, “Reach this target goal,” but they do not speak with all of the workers about how exactly to do that, which would include splitting up objectives into tasks and deliverables, then they are setting themselves up for failure. Companies need to ask, “What do I have to do to reach that objective?” Objectives shouldn’t be sloganized, either. For example, saying, “Safety is our number one goal.” That needs to turn into S.M.A.R.T. tasks–specific, measurable, agreed upon, realistic, and time-based tasks.

Deming Principle #11: Break Down Barriers between Workers and Efficient Outcomes states principle number eleven is, “11. Remove barriers that rob the hourly worker of his right to pride of workmanship. The responsibility of supervisors must be changed from sheer numbers to quality.”

I just saw a show about how in the early 1900’s, production line workers were pushed to their absolute limit to create the most product in the least amount of time for the least amount of money. This is the absolute wrong approach. Management, not workers, need to realize what will help their workers to be the happiest they can be in their position. They need to figure out what the barriers are that are keeping the workers from performing their best in the best working conditions. Workers cannot do this. It is entirely up to management to make these vital changes. Workers have very little control over these outcomes.

Come back in two weeks for “Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Five!”

Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Three

Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Three

W. Edwards Deming created the 14 Deming Principles to describe a way to manage companies. Here’s an elaboration on principles six through eight.

Deming Principle #6: There’s Always Room for Improvement states principle number six is, “6. Institute training on the job.”

Training is ongoing throughout the entirety of someone’s job. It never ends. Educating your staff should never end. Constant improvement is the way to go. No one should ever feel like they are in a routine that never grows or expands. What is exciting about this is that there new ways to improve and do things better. This leads people to never feeling bored in their positions.

Deming Principle #7: Leadership is Essential states that principle number seven is, “7. Institute leadership. The aim of supervision should be to help people and machines and gadgets to do a better job. Supervision of management is in need of overhaul, as well as supervision of production workers.”

Leadership is essential. Alexander the Great, who was probably a little over five feet tall, had men around him who were six feet tall or greater; they all shuddered at his presence, however. Alexander the Great had such charisma and such extensive leadership skills that his presence was intimidating. Leadership skills are hard to teach, however. Without it, you can’t get workers to do their jobs for you.

Deming Principle #8: Usher Employees to Improvement Without Instilling Fear states that principle number eight is, “8. Drive out fear, so that everyone may work effectively for the company.”

How many times have you heard managers calling in employees and saying, “If you do X, Y, or Z again, you’re fired.” A worker cannot function with having his job held over his head. Management cannot manage their staff by fear if they want success from their team members. Too many people think when they get promoted, they have to be a Napoleonic figure. You can manage by fear, but you can’t gain success that way. Give the employee longer than usual. Give counseling. Encourage him/her. If it doesn’t work out, then they need to leave, but that’s how you manage. Mange with kindness, compassion, and a sense of ownership in the situation. Make sure to lead that person gently to the right decisions not with fear.

Come back in two weeks for “Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Four!”

Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Two

Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Two

W. Edwards Deming created the 14 Deming Principles to describe a way to manage companies. Here’s an elaboration on principles three through five.

Deming Principle #3: Fix the Defects Now states that principle number three is, “Cease dependence on inspection to achieve quality. Eliminate the need for inspection on a mass basis by building quality into the product in the first place.”

In the US, when they make cars, they get don’t inspect for defects in the process of making the cars. They make the cars and then fix the flaws at the end. In Japan, if they find a defect, they shut the process down and, then, find a way to fix it, so it doesn’t happen again. Then they start the process again. This is vital to pay attention to when working on the effectiveness of a company. Defects and flaws should be worked on right away during the process not after.

Deming Principle #4: Don’t Chase Nickels and Dimes states that principle number for is, “End the practice of awarding business on the basis of price tag. Instead, minimize total cost. Move toward a single supplier for any one item, on a long-term relationship of loyalty and trust.”

So many companies are chasing nickels and dimes. Once a year they reprice their products and services to make sure they get the absolute best prices on everything. The only way you can get quality is through long term relationships with vendors and contractors. They learn to give the best services they can to you over time. You don’t accomplish that by having to retrain everyone on pricing constantly. It’s more expensive to chase nickels and dimes. Get the best you can from vendors and contractors not the least expensive. This will eventually help you to reduce total costs.

Deming Principle #5: Reduce Variation states that practice number five is, “Improve constantly and forever the system of production and service, to improve quality and productivity, and thus constantly decrease costs.”

The point is to reduce variation along the way so that accuracy is more and more attainable. One would do this through statistical analysis. Machines that are supposed to punch a hole in a sheet of metal in the exact center sometimes are off center. This confuses companies, as they program the machines to work with preciseness; however, there is always variation in life, and it is important to try to reduce the variation between the highs and lows as time goes on. Constant improvement in this area does not comes from the workers, but the management team. The management team can only do this, however, through connecting with their workers and understanding what they face on a daily basis.

Check back in two weeks for “Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Three!”

Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part One

Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part One

Management consulting is so helpful because it provides a rich variety of different perspectives on business. One aspect that makes it so golden is simply because it is coming from the outside of the company receiving the consulting work. This keeps ideas fresh and provides companies with unique opportunities. It provides perspectives on how to grow instead of remain stuck in certain patterns or habits. It teaches management to take more responsibility and put less strain on workers. It helps a company become more cohesive in its purposes and move forward as one unit. Management consulting is highly valuable. The Deming Principles take management consulting to a whole deeper level. The Deming Principles are so practical and objective that they can not only be used to aid a company in becoming more successful, but it can also be used as a list of philosophies to live one’s life by.

Deming Principle #1: Maintain a Consistent Purpose

According to, the first principle states, “Create constancy of purpose toward improvement of product and service, with the aim to become competitive and to stay in business, and to provide jobs.”

What happens with a lot of companies is someone gets hired and they are given a set of objectives that may differ from others in the company. It is important to make sure the company has one set of objectives that everyone works towards. If different positions within the company point to various objectives that sometimes compete with one another, then the job descriptions of the workers need to change. There must be a systematic approach. Deming would only come to advise companies if the CEO was there so that there is consistency in this regard across the company.

Deming Principle #2: Workers are Not in Control, Management Is states that the second principle is, “Adopt the new philosophy. We are in a new economic age. Western management must awaken to the challenge, must learn their responsibilities, and take on leadership for change.”

Workers cannot make changes to a company; only management can do that. The cause of certain methodologies within a company does not come back to the workers. It comes back to management. Management is the one in control. Deming did not believe in bonuses, because it caused workers to do what was necessary to get the bonus, even if that meant doing something that was not according to appropriate and best practices. Having bonuses distorts the system. Management is the cause and solution in this case. They cause the problem by allowing people to use non-legitimate practices but then solve the problem by taking bonuses away.

Come back in two weeks for “Elaborating on the 14 Deming Principles: Part Two!”


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