Total quality management (TQM)
Total quality management (TQM) refers to management approaches and initiatives aimed at improving the level of quality of a business output. TQM targets all business activities including directing, organizing, controlling, and staffing functionalities to achieve customer satisfaction in the provision of goods and services. The concept of TQM has developed over a long period in order to streamline its functionalities for effective delivery of services and improvement of organizational culture. Some of the leading TQM gurus like W. Deming, V. Feigenbaum, Kaoru Ishakawa and J. Tuan have influenced the concept of TQM and the values derived from it. An organization conveniently and suitably adjusts its culture to promote productivity through the adoption of TQM. TQM focuses on executive management, employees, processes, culture, and methodology of production in organizations. Organizations must incorporate multiple values to ensure the proper conduct of Total Quality Management. The desire to achieve the highest level of TQM in an organization requires the organization to inculcate virtues such as ethics, integrity, trust, training, teamwork, leadership, employee recognition and communication. TQM elements initiate with founding components, such as ethics, integrity, and trust, which drive the need for quality in management. In this regard, business ethics entail the codes of conduct that distinguish wrong from right in the context of business operations while integrity refers to honesty, impartiality, and morals that customers expect the business to demonstrate in delivering its services. Similarly, trust nurtures TQM because it enhances integrity and ethics within organizations.
There are other crucial components of management, including total quality control (TQC), theory of constraints (TOC), six sigma, and lean production, which an organization can adopt to enhance its effectiveness apart for TQM. TQC in a production system encompasses the need to enhance the reduction of defective products and time wastage. The workforce should have appropriate skills and knowledge that promote their level of productivity. In addition, employees should have essential tools that enable them to deliver appropriately given the available resources. The senior personnel have to provide employees with appropriate methodologies that guide them in the production process to ensure quality products.
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