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Total Quality Management

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A primer on Total Quality Management.

A primer on Total Quality Management.


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  • 1. Total Quality Management The Al Walsh Version Walsh Enterprises Business Advisors Huntington Beach, Ca Al Walsh CEO / Consultant
  • 2.
    • TOTAL QUALITY MANAGEMENT (TQM) What is it, and why should I care?
    • Ask ten people that question and you’ll get ten answers. Most responses will indicate that it’s
    • somehow related to quality – which is partially true.
    • Here’s the version I learned and have been applying for years:
    • TQM is a business philosophy. It’s more a state of mind than a specific tool or process.
    • It’s a concept that has become somewhat lost or misconstrued among all the other business improvement acronyms in this day & age - but it belongs at the heart & soul of every company’s culture.
    • It’ a platform for obtaining and sustaining quality performance at every level in a company (there’s that word “quality”) .
    • It’s a simple way to convey to even the humblest intellects the importance of each and every person and group to a company’s success.
    • It’s a philosophy that invites, encourages, and requires participation and “ownership” by every employee.
    • It’s a framework inside which every worthwhile business improvement methodology can be applied.
    • It can be applied at any level; individually and by group.
    • It’s a mind-set that encourages people to re-think their jobs in light of their impact upon the total business - at every level.
    • Each and every application of TQM is unique - reflecting the uniqueness of the person or group applying it and their unique relationship with their “customers”.
    • It’s intended to address everything a company does – and includes its outside “partners”.
  • 3.
    • At its core, TQM recognizes that every person & group in every company has
    • “ customers”.
    • Those “customers” are all the people and groups inside and outside the company who rely
    • upon them to perform their duties as effectively as possible.
    • Customers (the ones who buy the products) are “customers”
    • Employees & groups are “customers” - of other employees & groups
    • Employees & groups can be each others’ “customers”
    • Insiders and outsiders (i.e.: Vendors) can be each others’ “customers”
    • Anything that takes place:
    • C-Suite, Finance, Operations, Administration, Sales/Marketing
    • is subject to TQM - Everything!
  • 4.
    • TQM is applied by getting people to recognize who all of their “customers” are,
    • and then encouraging them to re-think how they can better-serve those “customers”.
    • It’s a mental discipline that is best-applied in a positive, constructive environment; with some
    • form of motivational reward initially to get the process moving.
    • Every employee and group has “customers”:
    • A factory worker who performs a process on a part or assembly has “customers” in the
    • entire process following them; right up to putting the finished product in the hands of the
    • person who ordered it.
    • A payroll clerk has every other person behind them in Accounting as “customers”, as
    • well as all the other employees who rely on them for their checks.
    • A salesperson has the people who order the goods as “customers” plus everyone else in
    • the company who relies on them to move product.
    • A supervisor or manager has “customers” who rely upon the effective performance of
    • their organization.
  • 5.
    • The TQM concept should be explained from top-down
    • To managers, then to Supervisors, then to Employees
    • and then applied in all directions:
    • Top-Down, Bottom-Up, and Horizontally
    • It’s a philosophy that should be permanently instilled, so regular follow-up is necessary.
    • The method of instruction should be keyed to each audience.
    • There should be a mechanism for feedback - so that when a motivated employee comes up
    • with a suggestion they have a vehicle for seeing it through.
    • TQM is nothing more than a philosophical approach for accomplishing what business people
    • have sought time immemorial:
    • Faster, Better, Cheaper, Smarter, More Efficient, etc.
    • Its beauty is that it encapsulates in a simple, motivational format a mind-set for business
    • excellence.
  • 6.
    • As I said earlier, it’s a philosophical approach as opposed to a specific methodology, so let
    • your imagination be your guide as to how you apply it. Just keep in mind that its primary intent
    • is to engage employees – so leave room for them to help shape the process.
    • Good luck,
    • Al Walsh CEO
    • Walsh Enterprises Business Advisors
    • (714) 465-2749 [email_address]
    • http://www.awalsh.us