Deming offered fourteen key principles to managers for transforming business effectiveness. The points were first presented in his book Out of the Crisis. Although Deming’s 14 Points don’t use the term, he is credited with launching the Total Quality Management movement. This, in our opinion, is why Apple replaced Microsoft as a leader of technology.
W. Edwards Deming’s 14 Points:
1. Create constancy of purpose toward improvement of product and service, with the aim to become competitive, stay in business and to provide jobs.
2. 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.
3. Cease dependence on inspection to achieve quality. Eliminate the need for massive inspection by building quality into the product in the first place.
4. End the practice of awarding business on the basis of a price tag. Instead, minimize total cost. Move towards a single supplier for any one item, on a long-term relationship of loyalty and trust.
5. Improve constantly and forever the system of production and service, to improve quality and productivity, and thus constantly decrease costs.
6. Institute training on the job.
7. Institute leadership. The aim of supervision should be to help people and machines and gadgets do a better job. Supervision of management is in need of overhaul, as well as supervision of production workers.
8. Drive out fear, so that everyone may work effectively for the company.
9. Break down barriers between departments. People in research, design, sales, and production must work as a team, in order to foresee problems of production and usage that may be encountered with the product or service.
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.
11. a. Eliminate work standards (quotas) on the factory floor. Substitute with leadership.
b. Eliminate management by objective. Eliminate management by numbers and numerical goals. Instead substitute with leadership.
12. a. 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.
b. 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.
13. Institute a vigorous program of education and self-improvement.
14. Put everybody in the company to work to accomplish the transformation. The transformation is everybody’s job.
“Massive training is required to instill the courage to break with tradition. Every activity and every job is a part of the process.”
Deming didn’t prefer lists because they are, in fact, hierarchical. Quality means being flexible, living in the moment, thinking and feeling our way to what is highest and best and for the good of all, and asking questions. Steve Jobs kept asking questions, using his products, and asking more questions. In contrast, Bill Gates formed an organization that rewarded the top engineer, and punished the lowest engineer in every setting. In our opinion, this led to infighting, posturing, and focussing anywhere but the products.