Many organizations pride themselves on the quality of their offered products and/or services. Over time, increasing globalization and competition has pressured organizations to modify their competitive strategies and implement strategic quality evaluation techniques, known as total quality management. This paper will explore and define total quality management, discuss the impact of globalization on quality, and compare traditional management styles and quality-focused management styles. In addition, I will explain how total quality management applies to my organization.
What is Total Quality Management?Total quality management (TQM) surfaced in the 1980s as a fix for the declining quality issues that the manufacturing industry was facing. According to Wadsworth, Stephens, and Godfrey, total quality management is "a process that integrates fundamental management art and techniques with the principles and methodologies of total strategic quality to develop and implement successful business strategies throughout the organization" (2002). In other words, TQM is a strategic management approach where all levels of management and employees are involved in the continuous quality improvement of the organization's products and services.
What makes TQM a management method is how the culture of the organization is altered in a way that centrally focuses on customer satisfaction through quality improvement. The principles of this organizational process involve every function and every employee in satisfying the needs of the internal and external customer. Through the nonstop improvement of manufacturing and control processes, an organization draws its center of attention on quality and customer satisfaction, which can lead to improved production and higher levels of performance. Continuous quality improvement techniques that use employees to drive quality upward along with statistical process controls, such as Six Sigma, that measure production output versus defects make up TQM.
There are several key figures that have contributed significantly to the development and implementation of TQM. These include W. Edwards Deming, Philip Crosby, and Joseph Juran.
Based on their theories, TQM can be successful if the following factors are implemented in the strategy: top management commitment, quality measurement and benchmarking, process management, product design, employee training and empowerment, supplier quality management, and customer involvement and satisfaction (American Society for Quality, 2003).
The Impact of Globalization on QualityWith the rapid growth of globalization, competition is becoming increasingly more stringent. Through the history of total quality and its...