Does Anyone Remember Dr. W. Edwards Deming?

Posted by on Jun 13, 2011 in Continuous Improvement | 2 comments

It’s been 16 years since Dr. Deming passed.  With all that has happened in the world, i.e., the banking fiasco, factory closings, governments on the verge of bankruptcy, the economic outlook, etc., what is the relevance of his Fourteen Points and 7 Deadly Diseases today?
Having re-read them just the other day, I have a hard time thinking that any company executive has them on their desk and uses them to help guide their daily decision-making.  I doubt whether college students today even hear of Dr. Deming, his Fourteen Points, or 7 Deadly Diseases and how they can help a company grow and create jobs.
Here are some of my thoughts as they relate to his Fourteen Points and 7 Deadly Diseases.
  • Very few companies seem to have tried to create constancy of purpose.
  • It’s all about short term profits and short term thinking!
  • Western management never awoke to the challenge, learned their responsibilities, or took on leadership for change.
  • Awarding business on the basis of price alone is the norm today.
  • Institution of leadership has not occurred.
  • Fear in the workplace is more prevalent today than at anytime in history.  People are terrified of losing their job.
  • Work standards and management by objective are more wide spread today.
  • All companies use some form of personal review system or evaluation of performance.
  • Mobility and job hopping of management is wide-spread.  There is no loyalty and dedication.  The day is over that a career is spent at one company.
  • Medical and liability costs have sky-rocketed.
  • The transformation has ceased to exist.

I wonder what Dr. Deming would think now?  I’d like to hear your comments and find out if your organization uses Dr. Demings Fourteen Points.

2 Responses to “Does Anyone Remember Dr. W. Edwards Deming?”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Odom,

    Dr. Deming's philosophy could not compete with the likes of TQM, 6s, Re-engineering, Lean, Lean-6s, and others. Most managers found these approaches more palatable, driven by the illusion of quick returns and ease of implementation. The result was more waste because none of these approaches addressed the need to transform the MBR driven corporate governance systems.


    Fernando J. Grijalva
    @demingsos (twitter)

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