W. Edwards Deming Quotes

Quotes by W. Edwards Deming

The System of Profound Knowledge provides a lens. It provides a new map of theory by which to understand and optimize that we work in, and thus to make a contribution to the whole country.


A system must have an aim. Without an aim, there is no system.


An operational definition is a procedure agreed upon for translation of a concept into measurement of some kind.


American management thinks that they can just copy from Japan—but they don’t know what to copy!


Experience teaches nothing. In fact there is no experience to record without theory… Without theory there is no learning… And that is their downfall. People copy examples and then they wonder what is the trouble. They look at examples and without theory they learn nothing.


the system that people work in and the interaction with people may account for 90 or 95 percent of performance.


Deming’s First Theorem: “Nobody gives a hoot about profits.”
Deming’s Second Theorem: “We are being ruined by best efforts.”


How can she put forth her best efforts when no matter how carefully she works, the item will still be defective? If no one cares, why should she? In contrast, when defects are rare or nonexistent or well explained, she understands that the management are accepting their proper responsibility, and she feels an obligation to put forth her best efforts: they are now effective.


We cannot rely on mass inspection to improve quality, though there are times when 100 percent inspection is necessary. As Harold S. Dodge said many years ago, ‘You cannot inspect quality into a product.’ The quality is there or it isn’t by the time it’s inspected.


The consumer is the most important point on the production-line.


Quotes by W. Edwards Deming that W. Edwards Deming referenced.