March 1998


Benchmarking Your Plant Against TQM Best-Practices Plants: Part 1 of 4

by Rogers, Hank

The Ford Ranger Truck Plant is the first of four world-class operations described in a series of articles on quality practices. A visit to this assembly plant consisted of: discussions with the quality manager; observation of quality review at the end...


Incorporating the Tools of Creativity into Quality Management

by Plsek, Paul E.

Innovation and creativity are keys to the changes needed for business success. Research indicates that innovation is linked with financial performance, customer demands, competitor strategies, and change itself. Directed creativity is creativity based...


The Importance of Concepts in Creativity and Improvement

by Provost, Lloyd P.; Langley, Gerald J.

To think is to follow a succession of connected concepts. Though the definition of concepts is fraught with paradox, concepts are keys to change and improvement. Concepts lead to new directions and new ideas through disturbances or provocations in...


It Takes More Than Sparkling Water

by Oswald, Lisa; Lang, Alexandra

As a customer-focused organization, BHC Co. is a Connecticut utility that has earned many service and product initiative awards, including the 1997 Connecticut Small Organization Quality Award. Customer focus is especially needed in the highly...


Lessons from Team Leaders

by Henry, Jane E.

Teams are important tools for communication, innovation, accountability, and opportunity in all types of organizations. Therefore, team leadership is a vital function, whether the leader selects the team members or joins a team that is already in...


Preventive Action vs. Corrective Action: The Horse, the Barn Door, and the Apple

by Taylor, C. Michael

Preventive action is more valuable than corrective action. The best approaches to preventive action are ongoing, systematic, deliberate, proactive, analytical, investigative, and predictive. A story about missed opportunities for prevention tells of...


Open Access

Doing the Right Things Right

by Chandler, Kurt

The 1997 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award winners were honored at a ceremony in which President Clinton noted that continuous improvement and the elevation of employees serve the bottom line and the general public. Solectron Corporation won its...



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