The W. Edwards Deming Institute Blog

Posts Tagged ‘systems thinking’

Specification-based Management is Not Sufficient

Guest post by Bill Bellows (originally written as a comment about the question of how Dr. Deming viewed six sigma). While Dr. Deming was known for his appreciation of continuous improvement, he was also know for encouraging us to think of variation and improvement from a systems perspective. As such, I do not believe he […]

The Schools Our Children Deserve by Alfie Kohn

Alfie Kohn starts with an excellent discussion his fear of applying business improvement ideas in the education setting. …And yet, Dr. Deming’s work offered some principles at an abstract level that when pulled out of a workplace context turn out to be equally revolutionary, powerful, and constructive in virtually any other kind of environment, including […]

Systems Thinking: Feedback Loops

Appreciation for a system is one of the four components of Deming’s management system. In this context the most common item to think of is Deming’s diagram of an organization as a system. That is a powerful diagram. When thinking of appreciation for a system within the Deming context the view of the organization as […]

The Intellectual Foundation of Modern Improvement

The video above shows Don Berwick’s presentation at the IHI/BMJ International Forum on Quality and Safety in Health Care, 13 April 2016. He starts the presentation with the Red Bead Game (see related posts on our blog: Lessons From the Red Bead Experiment with Dr. Deming, The Red Bead Experiment with Dr. W. Edwards Deming). […]

Lean Management Journal Articles by Bill Bellows

Bill Bellows serves on the board of trustees for The W. Edwards Deming Institute. He has been writing articles for the Lean Management Journal for several years that discuss how to apply Deming’s ideas (and related management improvement ideas) in organizations. Those articles include: The Last Straw And, so it goes, when we relentlessly focus […]

Alfie Kohn on Systems Thinking, Human Behavior and Education

Alfie Kohn, author of Punished by Rewards, No Contest: the Case Against Competition and many other books on human behavior, management and education is the guest on this Deming Podcast. Alfie explains that, as a contrarian, he searched for issues where logic and research suggested certain action while practice differs from those expectations. His research […]

People Copy Examples and Wonder Why They Don’t Succeed

People copy examples and then they wonder what is the trouble. They look at examples and without theory they learn nothing. W. Edwards Deming in The Deming of America. See a longer quote with more context. We can learn from looking at what others do well. But when we try and copy practices, processes, techniques, […]

Cash Incentives Won’t Make Us Healthier by Alfie Kohn

Dr. Deming referred to Alfie Kohn’s work and ideas when he was consulting, giving seminars and in The New Economics. Alfie Kohn will be a keynote speaker at our 1st annual Deming in Education Conference this November 6th to 8th in Seattle, Washington. In this article (and the embedded presentation included below) Alfie Kohn explores […]