The W. Edwards Deming Institute Blog

Posts Tagged ‘problem solving’

Exploring Complex Problems Using Systems Thinking

Cornell Policy Review published a special issue exploring the application of systems thinking to public policy problems. Graduate students were given an introduction to systems thinking and then applied the concepts to address issues their field. Students applied systems thinking to a wide array of problems, and they reported finding DSRP [distinctions, systems, relationships, and […]

Podcast with Lynda Finn: The Value of the Simple Run Chart

Lynda Finn, President of Statistical Insight and facilitator for The Deming Institute. Download the podcast with Linda: A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Data Points. This podcast is the first episode of our “Knowledge In Variation Series.” Lynda discusses the importance of moving from spreadsheets to plotting data, and the common mistakes that organizations make […]

Attributing Fault to the Person Without Considering the System

Fundamental attribution error: attribute fault or defect to the individual without first considering the systemic effect. When we fall into this trap the system is not improved. What we want to do is when we find poor results is think about how the system can be improved to consistently produce better results. By using management […]

Improving Problem Solving

I suggest reading this excellent paper on Improving Problem Solving by Ian Bradbury and Gipsie Ranney. As they note, problem solving is not a substitute for innovation and improvement as solving a problem solving only returns you to the status quo. The paper also considers the relationship between problem solving and system improvement. Their paper […]

The Improvement Guide

The Improvement Guide is a fantastic book on using the PDSA cycle well. The 2nd edition was published in 2009. The power of applying the PDSA cycle properly is huge. It leads to successful improvements which is important. Using the PDSA cycle also reinforces many aspects of applying Dr. Deming’s principles. Together with Leader’s Handbook […]

Dr. Deming Called for the Elimination of The Annual Performance Appraisal

In Out of the Crisis, page 101, Dr. Deming states the following as one of the seven deadly diseases: Evaluation of performance, merit rating, or annual review… The idea of a merit rating is alluring. the sound of the words captivates the imagination: pay for what you get; get what you pay for; motivate people […]