Deming Concept

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W. Edwards Deming was considered to be way ahead of his time. His philosophical ideas were also considered radical in the United States during the 1950’s, but were quickly adopted by Japan. He developed what later became known as Deming’s 14 points, that would later launch the Total Quality Management Movement in the United States, which were not actually accepted until the 1980’s. One of his philosophies that I found interesting was Point #5: “Improve constantly and forever the system of production and service, to improve quality and productivity, and thus constantly decrease costs.” This philosophy was foreign in the 1950’s, where managers’ philosophy was focused more on power and control. Deming’s concept leaned more towards a teacher/student relationship, instead of the power and control focus of his time. Humans are very resistant to change however, and that is why I feel this is an important concept that some companies still struggle with today. My employer for example, Lowe’s Distribution Center, has some managers that don’t like to change processes because “it is the way they like it to be done”. Deming’s philosophy involved a new focus, which involved management to constantly be looking for improvements that can be made in both their processes, and technology that would reduce cost. Our computer system that controls every function in our facility is about 22 years old, and is outdated to the point where it has employees repeat steps to convince the computer system the task has been completed. Inefficient methods lead to higher cost. Higher costs in turn seem to add to our society’s need for power and control, resulting in increased pressure on team members to make up for the inefficiencies of the system. At this point, team members than reduce quality to meet increased expectations, resulting in decreased customer satisfaction. The long-term result involves lower profit margin and decreased sales, which all could have been avoided if Deming’s points...
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