This research paper provides a suggestion for a possible way to implement Total Quality (TQ), which is supposed to help a colleague with the implementation within his organization. It provides theoretical, as well as practical advice.
2. ISO 9000 and Malcolm Baldrige Award as a starting point
For some companies choosing a starting point appears to be so challenging that they never begin. This is is referred to as the so called ‘total quality paralysis’ (Oakland, 2003, pp. 339).
When a company is not yet fully ready to implement TQ but wants to develop in this direction there are several other options, namely getting ISO 9000 and making a self-assessment according to the Malcolm Bardrige Award. The preparation for ISO 9000 includes a lot of points that also need to be addressed during the implementation process of TQ. Furthermore it is a prerequisite for cooperation for many companies. The Malcolm Baldrige Award emphasizes the importance of quality for the economic situation of the whole country, recognizes great performance and superior competitiveness. It also encourages the exchange of information and experience among US companies. The preparations are expensive but frequently subsidized by the government. Most of the companies preparing for this award do not do it with the intention of winning the price. It helps them to gain an overview over their status compared to the best organizations worldwide and to identify potential areas for improvement (Kelada, 1996, pp. 328-329) (Goetsch and Davis, 2010, pp. 438-439).
3. Why is it necessary to implement total quality?
First of all it is necessary to make yourself aware of the reasons why the current system is no longer acceptable and why the implementation of Total Quality is essential to the survival of your company.
First of all most western companies prioritize short-term goals. For the last decades, initiated by Keynes, every project had to provide an assessable reward within a short period to be perceived as justifiable. Shareholders for example do not want to hear how successful a company is going to be in 10 years, they want to see their shares grow as much as possible, as soon as possible (Goetsch and Davis, 2010, pp. 418-420).
Furthermore, companies tend to be rather arrogant than focused on the customer, not caring about their opinion at all or thinking that they know customer needs better then the customer himself (Goetsch and Davis, 2010, pp. 418-420).
Another important argument states that the potential for contribution from employees, especially in hands-on positions, is drastically underestimated. Despite being proven to be true, many managers do not like to believe that those are the people who know more about the job than anyone else and are also the ones with the highest potential to solve arising problems. Therefore they will not listen to their employees on a regular basis, discouraging them, and consequently allowing a tremendous amount of brainpower going...