This paper has analyzed the problem of what impact does leadership have on quality. The scope of this work involves the specific work in the book called Leadership for quality by an author Juran J.M. It has reviewed various concepts by the author.
The approach to this problem has involved analyzing three functions of businesses, planning control and improvement in quality. Also, an analysis has been made in the work force part in order to get an idea of the factors that will lead to their improvement in quality.
The results in this analysis are that quality can be achieved through adequate planning , control and constant improvement inequality by a well motivated staff.
The implication of this analysis is that the trilogy in quality can be applied in all levels of management and in all businesses to address the question of quality impact hence it is a valid analysis which is up to date.
Analysis of Juran's Book "Leadership for Quality"
The author named Juran J.M started writing in his early twenties with his first book on statistical kind of methods applied in order to solve problems in manufacturing. In mid nineteen fifties, he left his engineering work in order to concentrate on writing leading to his first management book called quality form of control handbook. Since then, he has written many books on quality and organization. However, this paper will involve a summary and ultimate evaluation of ideas spelt out in a book called which shows impact of leadership on quality, which was one his publications in the year two thousand and three ( Juran,2003) .
The book illustrates how three main concepts involved in business like quality control, quality planning and improvement in quality as well as a step by step illustration of how these concepts can be applied by managers in solving management problems and providing quality.
The first business concept is on quality planning. The author describes the importance of developing a quality plan since it will align the products or services of the business to the needs of the customer. The first step is the determination of who in the mass market can be your customer. As such the author emphasizes on the use of the Pareto form of principle which ranks customers in the order of the most important ones first.
Afterwards, the next step in planning is to know the customer needs. In this case, the book illustrates that some customers have needs that are not explicitly shown hence managers need to communicate with their customers in order to understand their needs. After this step, the next one involves the development of goods or services that are in line with the customer requirements. Emphasis is put on the use of quality form of function deployment.
Further, the next step in quality planning is the development of processes which will enable the business to produce goods or services which meet the required features as per customer expectations. After the plans have been developed the last part is to send them to operations, which means that they will be produced as per the set plan.
Secondly, the other business concept illustrated in the book is quality control. In this case, the plans developed in the planning stage are taken to operations. This is the function which produces the actual product. They should maintain quality as per the plan through a series of steps.
The first step in controlling is the evaluation of actual performance especially through the use of statistical tools. Therefore, good plans should be measurable and should have goals to be realized. The next step is to compare the performance from the expectations in the control function. Again in this case, statistical form of tools should be applied in order to derive the differences and interpret correctly on what they mean.
The last step in the quality control is the formulation of solutions to deal with negative deviations from the set goals. Since the operating goals are directly linked to the capabilities of the processes, then specific processes which have differences can be identified and corrected.
Thirdly, improvement of quality is the other business concept addressed in the book. This is explained as the stage were a business will move beyond control hence making the operations of a business to get to higher horizons beyond what others are offering. This is achieved by the elimination of quality difficulties that were present in the products produced or even in the processes used in the production. In addition, the organization keeps on learning so that future plans and processes are of better quality.
Improvement of quality is illustrated through various steps. First, is the issue of establishment of an infrastructure in the business which will be the facilitator for a constant improvement in quality. This can be done by use of a council of quality in the business who should provide adequate resources and effort in line with improvement of quality. The second step is identification of the projects that will specifically improve on quality. This is done by using the quality council who enquire from employees as well as customers. They should select the promising projects in terms of being able to succeed and those that get results which are measurable. Lastly, the third step is the establishment of a team which has the responsibility of running the project. It should represent departments where the quality problem lies. Also, the departments which are most likely contributors to the problem should be involved. Moreover, those departments which can solve the quality problem should be in the selected team. The forth step is to train the team and ensure that they are well motivated in order to achieve quality improvement.
Therefore, investment directed to quality improvement will ensure that businesses gain have competitive advantage over other industries which are in the same line of business. However, the big question arises on how leaders can use their position in directing the organization to realize quality (Juran, 2003). Juran has accumulated experiences from thousands of leaders as well as chief executives in many organizations across the world in order for him to draw this plan which can be applied in almost every industry no matter the line of business it does.
Another point which is addressed in this publication is on strategic form of quality management in business. This aspect is described by the analysis of four areas. The first part is on the size and structure of management. It entails the scope, responsibilities and structures of an organization that has quality. Next is the assessment of risk, which involves use of quality audits in the strategic planning of the business. Moreover the other step is on reviewing the assessment of the impact in the organization of strategies employed by their leaders on various projects. Lastly, the lessons which businesses have learnt are important in providing an insight to the top executives as far as quality is concerned.
Furthermore, chapter seven in the publication addresses the issue on quality operation form of management. This involves a step by step view of how quality can be achieved by managing the resources in the organization through establishing efficient processes.
In the last chapters of the book, Jiran explains on the impact work force has in the attainment of quality in the organization. He advances on the use of upper management support for quality in order for it to have impact across the organization .Also; the training of employees will have a positive impact on quality improvement. In addition, introduction of quality circles as a measure of performance in the work force is addressed as an excellent method for motivation of workers. Adding to the above, quality kind of dikes has been emphasized as a way to ensure society is prevented from interruption in service delivery and also the occurrence of disasters.
Moreover, motivation and training for quality found in chapter nine and ten respectively involve employees of the organization as an important factor in the realization of the goals of quality established by the quality plan. In this case, motivation of employees through rewards like bonuses for those who realize quality and negative rewards like demotion for those who do not meet their quality targets. Training is essential in order for the employee to understand what is expected by the organization in as far as his or her duties are concerned (Juran,2003) .
Hence, analyzing planning further, the first step involved the identification of customers. This point is important since it is the foundation in the quality process since the top executives will be able to identify the right target market for their goods as well as services which will un turn grow their market base. For this to be done, a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities as well as threats) analyses is vital so that the top management can focus resources to the right customers’ hence promoting efficiency. Secondly, the next step was on determining the needs of each customer. In my view, this can be done through communication with the customer in order to identify specific needs. Also, the business top managers should avail a communication network which is open twenty four hours in order for the customer to keep in contact with them. Again a SWOT analyses can be used by management for them to have a clear picture of what customers expect from the business.
The other point is on aligning the needs of the customers with the features of their products. Leaders will achieve total quality by ensuring that needs of the customers are met and exceeded. Therefore, features of the product should satisfy the customer’s wants. Afterwards, establishment of processes which will be able to produce the product is essential. In this case, processes should exceed the cost and benefit analyses hence they should be cheap to run while ensuring that quality is maintained. Also, processes need to produce goods and services fast as at when required and in the right quantity. Planning for quality by the managers or leadership of an organization will ensure that an organization determines who and where their customers are, knows their needs, produce products that meet these needs through processes and lastly satisfy customers.
Many firms in the world today have failed in this stage of planning for quality. For example, the computer industry is faced with stiff competition and the top managers as well as executives have to keep on producing goods or services of better quality. The Apple Inc. company is an excellent example of a company that has been faced with decrease in revenues due to competition from Dell and Microsoft. The executives do not have an elaborate advance plan of customer needs hence leading the company to have a narrow market share compared to their competitors. Further, Microsoft produced windows seven which gained huge market share across the world. Therefore, emphasis on planning for quality cannot be overemphasized.
The second business concept advanced is on quality control. It has three steps which will be analyzed further (Juran, 2003). First, is on the determination of actual performance expectations of quality. This case will involve measuring how the organization has performed with respect to quality. Actual measures can involve the use of the quality control kind of council who will employ statistical form of tools to measure quality performance. This step is important to managers since a low measure would mean that competitors are performing better than them and hence increase competition. The second step will involve the comparison of actual and expected performance in line with quality. This step is important for leaders in organizations since it shows strategies to be employed in order to improve on negative deviation.
Lastly, acting on the decisions is done. There should be a clear structure on implementing the quality policies in an organization. The best example would be by use of the quality department in organizations to ensure that policies are implemented. In the case of the computer industry, Apple Inc. Company is a perfect example of a company that does not evaluate its quality control of products since many customers have been complaining of carbon emissions by the industry to the environment which has reduced the purchase of computer products from their companies. Also, their products have a very low lifespan meaning that they are of low quality compared to Dell. Therefore, the control of quality by organizations is paramount if they are to maintain competitive advantage.
The other concept in this book involves the improvement in quality which will ensure organizations products stand out in terms of quality (Juran, 2003). Various steps are involved in this. First, is on the infrastructure put in place by organizations in order for improvement to be monitored. The quality council is an important step in this. It should be responsible for coordinating as well as institutionalize the quality improvement in an annual period. The next step is for the specific projects to be identified. Evaluating this further, projects selected should have a set mission or objective to meet. The quality control members can develop a criterion to be implemented when selecting the best projects. Next is selection of project members. They may vary in terms of size as well as complexity but the most important aspect is for the composition to be from members of various departments.
In addition, provision of resources to these teams will result in solving the cause, establishing actions to counter repetition of the problem and lastly the establishment of controls which will result in maximum gains from the projects. For example, the banking sector is faced with a problem of many mails not being delivered in times when they are sending end year reports. The corrective measures will involve the use of a special team which can be established to contact the customers by phone in order for them to confirm actual results. This will improve on quality of service delivery by the bank and ensure customer loyalty.
In the review of the ten step criteria towards quality improvement, the first step is for the business to be aware for the opportunities available for improvement. Quality is directly linked to technology and any business in the world today can improve on quality if they tap available opportunities which can be identified clearly by the SWOT analysis described above. The second step involves setting goals towards improvement. The objectives should be SMART which means specific, measurable, as well as realistic and time bound. Creation of plans is the next phase. Fourthly, training should be provided to employees of the organization. This can be done by attendance of seminars, the use of training manuals as well as refresher courses in order for employees to be up to date in terms of technology advancement. The next step is for the organization to conduct the evaluation of projects to deal with present problems. After which a report on the progress and score of the project should be done for the top executives to perform a cost and benefit analysis of the project.
The next idea advanced in the book by Juran involves operational as well as strategic kind of quality management. Strategic leaders in organizations that have total management of quality will ensure that internally operating systems are in-line with external systems. Also, quality form of leadership in an environment of TQM will ensure that the vision is shared among all employees of the organization. Therefore, improvement of processes will lead to savings and ultimately enable a company to achieve total quality kind of management.
There should be lean and also the six sigma rule application to processes which will enable a business to be successful in the quality of products and services.
Employee quality as well as motivation and training is another issue that the author has advanced. In this case the quality of any new employee should be very high. Organizations should hire competent and experienced staffs that are creative in their field of study. Quality should be evident in the work force in terms of output and innovation. The next aspect is on motivation of workers. This involves the management of a business remunerating workers in the quality department well in order for them to work harder. Also, motivation can be through bonus packages to staff and also certificates of quality can be given to those who have attained and exceeded benchmarks in terms of quality. Therefore, leaders should provide adequate resources in the quality department and recognize it in the organization structure. Various factors within the organization in terms of manager and employee relation affect the quality of service delivered by the respective employee.
The attitudes of employees like job satisfaction and their commitment towards the organization are very important in reference to quality delivery. For example, if an employee is not comfortable with the pay they get from a job, it is easy for him or her to deliver low quality kind of services to customers which will in turn lead to negative market positioning by the customer. Adopting teamwork and also service traits to be in line with customer needs is important in an organization gaining a positive image towards the customers. For example, the owner of Virgin Atlantic airlines is a perfect example of a leader who fosters employee creativity as well as job satisfaction by leaving all the work of managing the organization to competent employees. This encourages them to work harder and deliver quality services to clients.
Top leaders should train their employees constantly in order for them to keep up to date on the new and more efficient methods of doing things. The two quality experts Juran as well as Deming called for leadership to flow from the top managers in order for the impact to be felt and implement in the structure of the organization. Today, companies are faced with competition on the grounds of quality. Therefore, the famous PDCA form of model established by Juran should be implemented in organization. It shows the plans, ‘do’ for acting on plans, checking on the achievements and lastly acting on the deviations from the plan.
In conclusion, the above analysis of a book by Juran has revealed that quality is the single most important element that businesses have to watch in order to survive in the industry today. The three concepts of planning, controlling and improvement in quality show that top leaders should keep watch of the changing customer needs so that they become repeat buyers. It is of essence that leaders also remunerate their employees especially in the quality department so that they surpass the quality benchmark which is very high in companies today.