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Total Quality Management (TQM)

During nineteen fifties Japan had a reputation for inferior quality goods and were shunned by international markets. This led Japanese organizations to explore new ways of thinking about quality. Then Japanese welcomed input from foreign companies and lectures from different Quality Gurus, including two American quality experts W Edwards Deming and Joseph M Juran. Japan’s strategies represented the new “total quality” approach. Rather than relying purely on product inspection, Japanese manufacturers focused on improving all organizational processes through the people who used them. As a result, during nineteen seventies Japan was able to produce higher-quality exports at lower prices, benefiting consumers throughout the world. Americans started calling this style of Management as “Japanese Style of Management” and also as “Total Quality Management”

TQM is a management approach/ philosophy/ process adopted by many organizations in the world for achieving excellence. Different Quality Gurus and TQM implementers defined it in different ways. Some definitions as defined by Quality Gurus’ are discussed here:

As defined by Dr.W.E Deming

As defined by Dr.W.E Deming is “TQM is a theory of management for improvement of Quality, productivity and competitive position.”

Dr.Kaoru Ishikawa of Japan in his book, Introduction to Quality Control

Dr.Kaoru Ishikawa of Japan in his book, Introduction to Quality Control, has stated “TQC is not a fast acting drug like penicillin, but a slow acting herbal remedy that will gradually improve a company’s constitution if taken over a long period”.

The famous Juran Institute USA of Joseph Juran

The famous Juran Institute USA of Joseph Juran, a contemporary of Deming states ” TQM is the set of management processes and systems that create delighted customers through empowered employees, leading to higher revenue and lower cost”

Achieve Total Quality

Another exponent of quality, Hutchins, in his book, Achieve Total Quality, says ” The objective of TQM is to make use of the brain power, creativity and work experience of the entire work force to create an unbeatable organisation in the market place.”

Other working definitions used in industry are:

  • Doing the right things, right, the first time and every time”..
  • TQM focus on processes and product together, the big ‘Q’ approach (unlike old tradition of focus on product quality only, the small ‘q’ approach).
  • TQM aims at balancing the needs and expectations of all the stakeholders.

Many companies add assets, manpower, and new machinery to increase profits, which calls for additional finances. But, TQM helps in generating profits even without additional investments.


a)    TQM Awareness training to executives

b)    Workshop on Step by Step approach to QIP/PIP/BIP

c)    Quality Circle training

d)    5’S’ concept training and consultancy

e)    Benchmarking

f)     Internal Customer Concept training and consultancy

References/ Sources:

Details from Official Websites of MBNQA,EFQM,CII,ASQ,BPIR,BIS,IMC and IOD.Author’s Personal experience with TISCO, Tata Projects and NTPC.