I really dislike motivational posters, particularly those meant to inspire quality. I guess it comes from the early Deming training/indoctrination and having been around too many environments where Quality meant a poster that said “Quality is YOUR Responsibility.” Posters are harmful when the point fingers at workers who don’t have total control of a situation (such as those faced with using cheap parts bought by procurement) or when the posters send a different message (quality is important) than what non-lean management emphasizes (keep moving the metal and shut up).
“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.”
Now the posters pictured here (click on them for a larger view) aren’t meant to be ironic or funny, at least that’s the appearance of it. They’re all from a website that appears to sell legitimate safety supplies. Unfortunately, they’ve decided to add some “quality” posters to their site. Most are puzzling if not unintentionally hilarious. I stumbled across them looking for some bad motivational posters to use for facilitating a version of Deming’s “Red Bead” exercise. To the left, Charlie Brown attempts to assemble a doll that hasn’t gone through the Design for Manufacturing Process.
Really, is a poster like this supposed to help?
Good thing the Pharaoh finally came out to the desert floor to inspect their work. I wonder how many pyramid builders tried to “stop the line” but were whipped instead? Pharoah Stalin says “Get back to work!”
I wish I had something more profound to say to wrap this up, I think the posters pretty much tell the story themselves. Posters do not lead to quality. Does Toyota rely on posters like this? I doubt it.
Thanks for reading! I’d love to hear your thoughts. Please scroll down to post a comment. Click here to be notified about posts via email. Learn more about Mark Graban’s speaking, writing, and consulting.