King, Joseph P. (1987, ASQC) International Business Machines Co., Austin, TX
Have you heard about Quality lately?- Everybody talks about it (books, talk shows, parties..)- Obviously important (Job #1, Kentucky Fried...)- Prime sales tool (Japanese cars, cameras, hi-fi...)- People motivator/morale builder (circles, excel teams)- Productivity and profit builder (COQ, Zero def., TAF, SPQC)Today's executive is constantly exposed to the fallout from all the activity generated in the name of quality, as noted above. It is difficult, maybe even impossible, to limit the amount of time and energy consumed by the executive just listening and learning about all the new techniques offered to secure dramatic improvements in quality. It is equally difficult to make decisions to utilize one or several of these new ideas. The payback is usually not short term and depends largely on management's ability to foster and actually implement new thought patterns across the entire work force.In the executive's world, the ability to show growth and profit on a real-time, ongoing basis is critical to both their own survival and the company's. Signing up for programs designed to improve quality requires commitment of funds and resources, and it is entirely appropriate to expect the programs to pay their own way in the short term as well as the long term. Many obstacles exist today when executives try to decide for or against an improvement program or try to choose one from among the long list available. An early problem faced by these executives stems from the different schooling before they can translate the programs into real life terms. A further complication of this occurs when exuectives who have invested the time and effort in schooling for themselves try to communicate with others in the organization who have not yet been "trained". The biggest obstacle of all, however, si the fact that in most companies, measurements systems do not currently exist to provide information to executives that would identify real improvements even if they were happening.The Survival Guide intends to provide a checklist approach using terms and measurements already in the vocabulary of the executives and their staff as well as the operating work force. The guide directs activities leading to meeting business requirements at the executive level and highlights areas needing help or support within the structure.Application of the approach on an actual product program is presented and discussed to reinforce the value of the guide.