PDCA (Plan, Do, Check, Act) is a 4 step cycle which is commonly used for problem solving, but can be used in any situation where you need an iterative approach to improvement. If you are familiar with Agile project management it’s a very similar concept of doing something, seeing how it went and adapting based on the outcome.

Before You Begin

Ask the following questions before you begin and be sure you are clear no the answers.

  • What are you trying to accomplish?
  • How will you know that a change is an improvement, what will you measure?
  • If you don’t have any data to measure can you start measuring to create a baseline for current performance?
  • What changes do you think will result in an improvement?

4 Step PDCA Cycle

PlanPlan what you’re going to do.
Define you objective, define questions and predictions you want to answer or confirm, develop a plan for the experiment (who will be involved, what will be done, where will it be done and when will it start and finish? Consider any training which may need to be provided).
DoDo it.
Put the plan into action, document any problems or unexpected observations, begin to analyse the data.
CheckCheck the results.
Complete the data analysis, compare data to predictions, summarise what was learned.
ActDecide what you’re going to do based on the results.
Decide what changes need to be made, will there be another cycle?
If the change resulted in improvement, what standards need to be put in place?
If you made the changes as a small pilot can you now repeat to a wider group?
The suggestions I have provided are based on my own learning from the variations of this method outlined in the Origins section below.


PDCA is based on a scientific experimentation which can be traced all the way back to the work of Galileo Galilei and Francis Bacon in the 1600s. Over time these methods were refined and combined with Pragmatism and Empiricism. In the 1930s inspired by these concepts, Walter Shewhart (a quality control specialist) produced a 3 step process for quality control: specification, production, inspection. This became known as the Shewhart Cycle and in turn inspired the work of William Edwards Deming (an engineer and statistician), who adapted it into a 4 step cycle: design the product, make the product, sell the product, get feedback about the product. This became known as the Deming Wheel and Deming himself discussed it during lectures he gave at the Japanese Union of Scientists and Engineers in 1950. From here Japanese executives reworked the Deming Wheel into what we know today as PDCA (plan, do, check, act). Deming preferred use of the word “study” instead of “check” and used the acronym PDSA (plan, do, study, act), calling PDCA a corruption which he did not know the source of. Unfortunately for Deming PDCA is what has stuck over time.

Get FREE productivity tips, hacks and insights every Wednesday.

What happens next?

When you click send, the information you have provided will be emailed to us. We will review it and contact you to chat about your project. 

If there’s a specific time you prefer to be contacted, please let us know in your message and we’ll do our best to honour your request.

Looking forward to talking to you!



2019 collection

Let’s face it, no look is really complete without the right finishes. Not to the best of standards, anyway (just tellin’ it like it is, babe). Upgrading your shoe game. Platforms, stilettos, wedges, mules, boots—stretch those legs next time you head out, then rock sliders, sneakers, and flats when it’s time to chill.

Log in

[mepr-login-form use_redirect="true"]


Not a member yet? 

Join now and get access to video tutorials, downloadable content and much more.