TQM vs LO LO11826

John Zavacki (jzavacki@wolff.com)
Sun, 12 Jan 1997 07:51:58 -0500

Replying to LO11808 --

Like Ben, I too, dislike the term "Total Quality Management". I was quite
confused by its introduction in the early '80s and still run into articles
which have TQM in the title but something else in the body.

If we trace its etymology, we'll see first Armand Fiegenbaum's "Total
Quality Control", and Deming's work on management pointing in the same
direction, but not quite the same. Someone (probably in the government
sector) put them together and we had an instant revolution (much of which
was highly effective in changing the way American industry works). The
problems came in when less learned organizations moved into implementation
phases. The went for the "higher law" plane of existence before they knew
the basics. In other cases, basics without operating principles.

There are no clear descriptively and explanatorily adequate works on TQM.
Some folks choose to think its all "empowerment". Others opt for "cease
dependence on mass inspection" and still others hang up a banner that says
"No More Slogan"

The is need for enlightened management addend enlightened leadership. And
need for an application of the notion of "internal consonance" or "shared
values" or "common goals" or whatever you want to call it. Open Book
Management, Agility, Systems Thinking, LO, are all parts of it. The need
is for an operating system for organizational systems. We've got
applications, there's a lot of underutilized personal mastery running
around in organizations, frustruated.by a Babel of interfaces.

The point for me isn't TQM vs LO or ISO or Deming vs Peters or Covey vs
Reeningeering, its operating system vs applications. New toys do not make
for new organizations without a constancy of purpose, internal

Ben knows as well as I that new software in the hands of an incompetent
organization just allows them to do the same, fragmented, nonsystematic
stuff faster.

John Zavacki
The Wolff Group

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <rkarash@karash.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>