Deming's objection to motivational posters, slogans, etc. was related the whole view of the job of management. The importance of this obligation is not easy to understand without knowledge of that system of management. The belief that such posters are an effective strategy are grounded in theory x management.
Also the use of such poster is highly correlated with managers that don't understand the processes they are managing and so they attempt simplistic "solutions" like telling everyone to "do a good job" "a happy worker is a busy worker" "avoid accidents" "waste not want not"...
The impact such slogans and posters have on most people (they just make management look stupid) can be seen through the posters at Despair. The same titles used by mangers with a twist, for example: Motivation: 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.Toyota using slogan posters:
Since Toyota actually stand behind their slogans with significant and sustained action (a rarity) these problems may be small. Still I think slogans are a bad idea - risky with very little actual benefit (the way they could be claimed to be a benefit is to focus people's minds, but only if they are a part of a system of improvement...).Most managers using slogans are much more likely to be like Dilbert's pointy haired boss than Toyota. Deming and Dilbert on Slogans (I really do find it annoying that web sites don't follow the web pages must live forever rule so the dilbert strip is a broken link).
Dr. W. Edwards Deming's management ideas have greatly influenced modern management practice. Many quotes and thoughts are attributed to W. Edwards Deming's system of management. Sometimes these represent his ideas accurately, and sometimes they do not. Here I attempt to clearly indicate what he actual said and include some of my thoughts on what he meant.