Curious Cat: Deming on Management - Quotes

Famous Deming Quotes

  • "It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory." Also "Learning is not compulsory... neither is survival."
  • "It is not enough to do your best; you must know what to do, and then do your best." Deming on being destroyed by best efforts
  • "A Numerical goal without a method is nonsense" Brian Joiner tribute
  • "No defects, no jobs. Absence of defects does not necessarily build business... Something more is required." New Economics, page 10
  • "The aim proposed here for any organization is for everybody to gain - stockholders, employees, suppliers, customers, community, the environment - over the long term." New Economics, page 51
  • the aim of leadership should be to improve the performance of man and machine, to improve quality, to increase output, and simultaneously to bring pride of workmanship to people. Put in a negative way, the aim of leadership is not merely to find and record failures of men, but to remove the causes of failure: to help people to do a better job with less effort. Out of the Crisis, page 248.
  • There is no instant pudding (for management)
  • People are entitled to joy in work. From the W. Edwards Deming Institute website (Dec 2006)
  • "the most important figures that one needs for management are unknown or unknowable" Deming actually quoted Lloyd S. Nelson saying this in the Out of the Crisis page 121.
  • I should estimate that in my experience most troubles and most possibilities for improvement add up to the proportions something like this:
    94% belongs to the system (responsibility of management)
    6% special
    Often quoted as "The system is responsible for 94% of problems" or "Management is responsible for 94% of the problems"
  • "There is no substitute for knowledge"
  • There is no knowledge without theory. From the W. Edwards Deming Institute website (Dec 2006)
  • Deming's Second Theorem: "We are being ruined by best efforts." From the W. Edwards Deming Institute website (Dec 2006)
  • In God we trust, all others bring data.
  • "Inspection does not improve the quality, nor guarantee quality. Inspection is too late. The quality, good or bad, is already in the product. As Harold F. Dodge said, 'You can not inspect quality into a product.'" Out of the Crisis page 29.
  • "Quality can not be inspected into a product or service; it must be built into it." Out of the Crisis page 227 (where Dr. Deming again refers to Dodge's quote)

Those without sources, seem right to me, but I don't have sources to quote yet. Please send your comments.

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Deming on Management