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- Landscaping Firm Applying Deming's Management Ideas
Each Brickman branch operates with a standard production model that the company developed in the late 1970s with consultant and renowned statistician W. Edwards Deming... Scott Brickman said the model emphasizes continuous improvements in communication with its nearly 10,000 commercial customers and education and cultivation of its employees to learn and advance within the company.
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- Performance of People: Does Performance Appraisal Help?
Why can’t performance be numerically rated and ranked? It can’t be defined operationally, it can’t be measured with any degree of precision, it can’t be separated from other effects, and it is destined to vary over time in any case. Any one of these factors present significant (if not insurmountable) problems itself. Combined the problems create an impossible barrier.
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- Public Sector Management Using Deming's Ideas
Madison’s quality improvement efforts began after then-Mayor James F. Sensenbrenner and his staff were exposed to the teaching of W. Edwards Deming in 1983. A pilot project at the motor equipment division made substantial improvements in prioritizing repairs, improving communications with customers, reducing steps in the inventory purchasing process and, ultimately, reducing vehicle down time, all of which saved money and improved service at the same time. Based on the success of the pilot, it was decided to expand the philosophy throughout city government.
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- Performance Appraisal Problems
- Theory in Practice
Knowledge is built upon theory… Rational prediction requires theory and builds knowledge through systematic revision and extention of theory based on comparison of prediction with observation.
W. Edwards Deming, page 102, The New Economics
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- A Company’s Purpose is to be Useful to Society
- Lean Manufacturing Success
Not only is this a nice story but it is one small example of the good people working at GM and Ford. The problem is not the individual workers it is management. It is too bad that those companies, that did take great strides in the 1980 and early 1990s to improve (starting with Deming’s Management ideas) let those efforts fade away.
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- Quality and Costs
Deming explained that increasing quality decreases costs. Page 3 of Out of the Crisis: Improve Quality –> Costs decrease because of less rework, fewer mistakes, fewer delays…
Like most models this does not explain everything. Achieving some quality desires does cost more. And the article examines how to look at the issue of cost reduction in health care, where the view that higher quality costs more persists to a larger extent than elsewhere. There is significant room in health care for adopting improvement that will improve quality and reduce costs because the systems are so poorly designed they are both increasing costs and decreasing quality over what could be achieved.
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- Management: Geeks and Deming
Several of Deming’s 14 obligation of management and 7 deadly diseases are noted in this quote, including: “Remove barriers that rob people of joy in their work” and the disease – “Emphasis on short term profits.” Deming was a physicist so that may explain the similarity of this ideas to geek management culture.
- “Geeks seek knowledge for it’s own sake” – Deming’s point 13 “Institute a vigorous program of education and self-improvement.” Deming encouraged organizations supporting education of employees – even when unrelated to work in any direct way.
- “Geeks like to experiment” – many of Deming’s ideas focus on this point, most obviously is the emphasis on PDSA
- “Geeks openly debate the merits of technical ideas”
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- Problems Caused by Performance Appraisal
People are increasingly challenging the notion that we just have to live with performance appraisal systems. As usually, I will make my suggestion that chapter 9 of the Leader’s Handbook offers great material on performing without appraisal (and the rest of the book is great too).
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- Better and Different
The answer, as I see it, is to be better and different (when necessary).
if you have to choose one, just being better will work most of the time. The problem is (using an example from Deming, page 9 New Economics) when, for example, carburetors are eliminated by innovation (fuel injectors) no matter how well you make them you are out of business.
Often people mistake Deming’s ideas as only about being better. He stressed not only continual improvement (Kaizen, incremental improvement, SPC) but also innovation. He stressed innovation both in the normal sense of innovating new products for customers and also innovation in managing the organization.
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- Supplier Development Article
- Quality and Innovation
I really don’t understand how people can talk about innovation as if it were some new discovery. Yes I understand we can bring a different focus to innovation. We can reconfigure management structures to encourage and support innovation. That is good. And new ideas are being developed, but the innovation fad is silly. And accepting the notion that this innovation stuff is some new idea will make managers less effective than if they understand the past.
New Economics by W. Edwards Deming, published in 1992, page 7:
Does the customer invent new product of service? The customer generates nothing. No customer asked for electric lights… No customer asked for photography… No customer asked for an automobile… No customer asked for an integrated circuit.
Innovation has long been important to those interested in management improvement.
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- Another Quota Failure Example
However, as I was to learn from Dr Deming, this was judging performance using arbitrary goals, which fostered short-term thinking – the only thing they cared about was: Did I make my quota this week? Misguided focus. The focus was not at all on the customer. The focus was: How much money can I make off this customer?
It created a lot of internal conflict. What type of internal conflict? Well, the salespeople hated having new salespeople hired on the floor, because they felt like it would cut into their commission…
Also, judging performance using arbitrary goals fostered a giant amount of fudging of the figures.
Jim McIngvale, CEO Gallery Furniture and author of Always Think Big.
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- Eliminate Slogans
Text from the poster: “If a pretty poster and a cute saying are all it takes to motivate you, you probably have a very easy job. The kind robots will be doing soon.”
One of Deming’s 14 obligations of management was to eliminate slogans - Stop Demotivating Employees.
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