Policy Deployment: Avoiding the "Crisis of Distraction"


Hawkins, Ruth M.   (1992, ASQC)   McDonnell Aircraft Company, St. Louis, MO 63166

Annual Quality Congress, Nashville TN    Vol. 46    No. 0
QICID: 9880    May 1992    pp. 599-605
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Article Abstract

Policy Deployment (also known as Policy Management or Hoshin Planning) provides one way for a company to step off the "crisis planning" treadmill. The author describes how the Engineering Division at McDonnell Aircraft used it to plan for the long term.

They started by conducting an internal customer survey to evaluate the division's performance. They discovered a discrepancy between the division's priority rating and that of internal customers. During the course of the survey, they found the cause to be a distraction from their mission by crises. Policy Deployment proved the most effective counter.

Senior division management spent three days examining data like the customer survey and comparing progress against Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award criteria (McDonnell's TQM self-assessment tool). The team also used an Affinity Diagramming technique to set goals. They continued to track progress toward these goals using a quality metrics system that ensured measurable response (e.g., an employee technical readiness survey).

They learned that the Policy Deployment goal structure must be simple and that if the methods is to be successful, management must be trained in the process.

Through their implementation of Policy Deployment, McDonnell Aircraft Company proved that the method is effective in combating "distraction by crisis."


Affinity diagram,Hoshin planning,Internal customer,McDonnell Douglas Corporation,Mission statement,Policy deployment,Quality metrics

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