What is ?
The name red bead is a metaphor for
the problems that we experience every day in our life.
The world is a never
ending supply of problems. You get up in the morning and solve the
problems of the day. Solve one problem and more problems appear. It is
the way of the world.
The world famous
W. Edwards Deming who was "the man who taught the
Japanese, America and many other countries about quality".
In 1982, a teaching
tool was created with Dr. Deming that he used in his seminars around the
world to teach his famous 14 Obligations of Management. Dr. Deming
called this training tool, The RED
BEAD Experiment or Red bead Game.
When you play the game, each player uses a special metal paddle to draw
small red and white colored beads from a large bowl.
Each draw of the paddle gets 50 beads. Some are white and some are red.
The white beads symbolize the good things that we experience each day as
we do our work and the red beads symbolize the problems or bad things
that we experience.
As each player draws their paddle full of 50 beads each player receives
a different mix of red and white beads.
There are many teaching examples as you play the game. One of the
examples that the teacher makes is that our lives experience different
things each day some good and some bad.
We as workers most of the time have no control over our experiences. We
the worker did not make the company our bosses did and we should not be
held responsible for most of the mistakes. Yes, we can control about 4
out each 100 problems but not the other 96 they are problems created by
If our bosses want us to do better work, they need to employee
specialists to ask us questions and then design improvements to the
system to remove the problems (red beads) that we find each day.
Yelling by the bosses at the workers will not do any good. Actually
yelling just makes the workers more quiet and shy and the names of the
process problems will be hidden even more.
So the workers have a very important role in assisting the bosses
improve. They know the names of the processes and our bosses should
create a friendly work environment that make the workers feel free (not
afraid) to speak up and share what they know.
On an on the game is played and more and more management points are
That is the parable of the RED BEADS as Dr. Deming calls it in his
information, please click to read this newspaper article written
by the Deli India Express India newspaper on 19 November 1998.
Why is the RED
BEAD Experiment Useful?
the RED BEAD Experiment used ?
What is History of Red Bead Experiment ?
What is Customer Delight ?
starts with Successful me !