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Project Management Blog
Tuesday, 21 August 2007 15:51

Point 14 - Deming in Project Management

Total Participation Starting From the Top

This point speaks to the need for
(1) commitment from top management and
(2) commitment from everyone else in the organization.
Quality is everyone’s job, and if any implementation is not total, it will not fulfill its full potential. 

In project management, I see this point alluding to executive formation and support of a company-wide Project Management Office. That PMO must be the central source of all project management knowledge, under continuous development by the practitioners of project management. Lessons learned and any potential improvements to the project management methodology used by all PM’s in the company should be evaluated, tested, and implemented as a positive change.

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Saturday, 16 June 2007 10:17

Deming's 7th Point in Project Management

Teach and Institute Leadership

It is the age-old distinction that usually merits much lip service and little true implementation. There is supervision/management, and then there is leadership. Project managers can either be supervisors or leaders, regardless of their job title.

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Saturday, 16 June 2007 09:46

Deming's 5th Point in Project Management

Continuous Improvement

This is one of my favorite points from Dr. Deming. I see so many mistakes that are made again and again, and lessons learned that are either completely undocumented or filed away after a project, never to be seen again.

Do all of the other project managers in the firm get exposure to lessons learned from other projects? Usually not, in my experience. Surely, individual project managers and sponsors learn from their projects, but organizational learning and continuous improvement require a formal process for the documentation, analysis, and incorporation of lessons learned into a common methodology.

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Dr. W. Edwards Deming was recently re-introduced to me in my Project Performance and Quality Assurance class. I have heard of him before and touched on some of his philosophy in other classes, but focused much more in-depth this time. The majority of his philosophy around quality and organizational management resonates with me. So, I've decided to do a series of articles on Deming's 14 points, and how they relate specifically to the field of project management.

Here are Deming's 14 points, paraphrased in my words:

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I'm a Theory of Constraints (TOC) enthusiast. So what exactly is TOC? Here's a short, short summary. In short, it's a method of identifying and strengthening the weakest link (constraint) in any process, in an iterative approach to ongoing improvement. There are also tools that go along with it to help identify assumptions and constraints, etc. TOC was developed by Eli Goldratt. The Avraham Y. Goldratt Institute is the organization that maintains the TOC body of knowledge.

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Thursday, 25 January 2007 21:08

Quality Assurance

Quality Assurance covers all activities from design, development, production, installation, servicing and documentation. It introduced the sayings "fit for purpose" and "do it right the first time". It includes the regulation of the quality of raw materials, assemblies, products and components; services related to production; and management, production, and inspection processes. One of the most widely used paradigms for QA management is the PDCA (Plan-Do-Check-Act) approach, also known as the Shewhart cycle. The main goal of QA is to ensure that the product fulfills or exceeds customer expectations. PDCA (also known as the Deming Cycle, Shewhart cycle, or Deming Wheel) is an iterative four-step quality control strategy.

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