Lighten Up

Quality in movies, music and TV

It’s November, and that means it’s World Quality Month (WQM). Now in its sixth year, the month-long celebration offers a unique opportunity to spread the word about quality via a host of features, ideas, templates, games and contests highlighting the impact of quality on people and organizations around the world. You can find everything you need to get started in the WQM toolkit at worldqualitymonth.org.

QP’s contribution to the celebration was to take a look at quality’s portrayal in TV, film and music over the years—popular culture. It turned out to be a very fun project—soliciting ideas from our readers, and then turning those suggestions into a fun (often funny) feature article with several short narratives describing the episode, character or lyrics (read "Pop Culture") referenced. You’ll find some classic examples from shows like "30 Rock," "Seinfeld" and "Friends," plus a few you may not have remembered.

From this feature, we assembled a video version with some favorite clips in this month’s episode of ASQ TV. Look for it Nov. 10 at http://videos.asq.org/home.

Also in this issue, find an article geared toward the broader quality landscape. "On the Horizon" summarizes some of the key themes and predictions from ASQ’s "Future of Quality Report." The report features insights from various industry thought leaders on what’s going to influence their particular areas of interest in the future and relates that back to how it might influence quality. A little bit different than ASQ’s previous futures studies, you won’t want to miss insights from the likes of Stanley McChrystal or Jonathan Zittrain.

Another feature seeking to shed light on quality and its role in the past and future is "Shatterproof." Authors Ted Marra and Tony Bendell share insights gleaned from a discussion they had on leadership, lessons learned and the pursuit of excellence. Some of their insights might change the way you discuss the role of quality in your own organization.

For my part in the WQM festivities, I leave you with the memory (and maybe a chuckle) from a favorite Dilbert cartoon. One character—the boss—explains to his subordinate that he is adding seven layers of management between them. He adds that his intention is to run the company without knowing anything about it. "That seems like a bad idea," says the employee.

"This sort of input is exactly what I’m trying to avoid," the boss replies.

Seiche Sanders

Seiche Sanders

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