Deming's Point One

Create Constancy of Purpose

The first of Dr. W. Edwards Deming's 14 Points for Management reads, "Create constancy of purpose to improve products and services."

♦ Are the board of directors and president dedicated to quick profits, or to constancy of purpose?

♦ No one ever said that quarterly dividends paid by public corporations are not important.  They're just not as important as being in business, capturing markets, providing jobs, and paying dividends 10, 20 or 30 years from now.

♦ It is easy to stay bound up in the tangled knots of today's problems.

♦ Establishment of constancy of purpose means acceptance of obligations like the following:

1. Innovate.  Allocate resources for long-term planning.

2.  Put resources into research and education.

3.  Constantly improve design of product and service.  The consumer is the most important part of the production line.

♦ "Part of America's industrial problems is the aim of its corporate managers.  Most American executives think they are in the business to make money, rather than products and service."  (Y. Tsumuri)


W. Edwards Deming, Out of the Crisis, MIT Center for Advanced Engineering Study, Cambridge, MA (1986), pp. 24-26, 99.

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