As noted in the Kerzner textbook, many people have been responsible for the quality movement with the leading contributors W. Edwards Deming, Joseph M. Juran, and Philip B. Crosby. Compare and Contrast the three primary quality gurus and select one of these leaders and describe why you feel his work has definitely contributed to project quality management. Build on the items presented in the textbook in terms of their contributions and the comparison of the expert’s work. Discuss the highlights of the quality Guru’s contribution.
Note what you believe are the advantages and disadvantages of this individual’s contributions. In your paper, describe why you selected this particular expert over the other two since all three have been so instrumental in the success of quality management. With quality playing a large role to gain the competitive edge over its competition, it’s no question as to why it’s important to study the history of the quality movement in project management. It is essential for a project team to produce a high quality product and to have high standards of quality when completing the assigned projects.
An organization may think their product is top notch but if the customer is not happy with the result or disagrees with the level of quality in a product the company will lose money. This is the reason why all companies and organizations must focus more of their resources on quality. Although the quality movement has had many notable contributors, the three most influential are W. Edwards Deming, Joseph M. Juran, and Phillip B. Crosby. (Kerzner, 2009, p. 877). All three men believed project quality success started with the personnel in management roles.
If a manager didn’t care or wasn’t paying attention to their employees, the quality of the products they provided would decrease and the outcome would be poor. Managers need to provide their employees with every available resource to be successful in creating a quality product. This includes education, leading by example and providing quality materials, tools, and equipment in order to be successful. Juran believed managers needed to be educated and trained on the changes to be implemented during the production process.
He felt resistance to change was cultural and the root cause of quality and human relation problems and said should be isolated and resolved (Smith, 2011, p. 42). Crosby was quick to point out that in order to create a manufacturing process that has zero defects; management must set the tone and ambiance for employees to follow. If management does not create a system by which zero defects are clearly the objective, then employees are not to blame when things go astray and result in defects occurring (Smith, 2011, p. 6). Deming believed the reason companies were not producing quality products was management concentrating on the wrong timeframe. They were focused on the here and now rather than the future of the business. Deming claimed that 85 percent of all quality problems required management to take initiative and change the process (Kerzner, 2009, p. 877). Another similarity between Deming, Juran and Crosby’s principles on quality is the significance of achieving the highest customer satisfaction.
They agreed it is a long term process that will take time and commitment from everyone and it will not produce results overnight. Improvements to reduce costs, anticipate problems and how to prevent quality flaws will be evident over time when cost and quality are not in competition with one another (Suarez, 1992, p. 16). The three gurus also agreed that education and training must be continuous at all levels to foster a common language of quality, to develop employee skills and knowledge to succeed (Suarez, 1992, p. 16).
Education of managers and employees in order to successfully implement a new process are the grounds to building good teamwork and communication. This all takes time and is not something that should be rushed or it will not be as successful. They also agree in the elimination of inspections in terms of achieving quality (for instance post production inspections) (Suarez, 1992, p. 17). Even though Deming, Juran, and Crosby all have similarities between their key principles in quality management there are several aspects that are different to the approaches.
They all recognize the importance of measurement to improve quality; however, the level of importance each emphasizes is different. Crosby and Juran view the cost of quality as the focus of measurement whereas Deming does not use the cost of quality as a focus (Suarez, 1992, p. 18). To Deming, meeting the customers’ needs and expectations about a product or service is of higher importance to quality. He also considers unknown costs such as the impact of lost customers to be more significant than visible costs (Suarez, 1992, p. 8). Deming, Juran, and Crosby all define quality in different ways. Deming defines quality as a continuous improvement and the ultimate goal is zero defects; however, he realizes an error free product may not be economically feasible or practical (Kerzner, 2009, p. 880). Deming also states a product or service is defined by the customer and quality is a relative term and will change based on the customer’s needs (Suarez, 1992, p. 3) Juran’s definition of quality focuses 100% of the customer’s satisfaction of the product.
He stresses a balance between product features and products free from deficiencies and believes a quality product is free from deficiencies (Suarez, 1992, p. 4). In order to achieve this satisfaction, Juran believes a company needs to spend its resources resolving “sporadic” problems (short term problems that generate sudden changes for the lessened quality) and “chronic” problems (may need scientific breakthrough to achieve higher levels of quality) (Kerzner, 2009, p. 80-881) Crosby says quality must be measurable and clearly defined to help the organization take action based on tangible targets rather than a hunch, experience or opinions. (Suarez, 1992, p. 3) Crosby argues that the cost of quality includes only nonconformance costs and is ultimately free (Kerzner, 2009 p. 881). Crosby’s measurable method for nonconformance relies heavily on motivation and the role of senior management (Kerzner, 2009, p. 881). He also believed there are no varying levels or degrees of quality; it’s either quality or it’s not (Suarez, 1992, p. 3).
In addition the three quality gurus view the role of the supplier importance differently. Deming favors the practice of working with a single supplier when feasible, thus reducing the variability of incoming materials (Suarez, 1992, p. 20). When a long-term relationship is made with one supplier that’s built on trust and understanding Deming believes the company benefits from suppliers improving their own processes. He believes they are more likely to provide better products and services in order to maintain long term contracts with the purchasers (Suarez, 1992, p. 0). Crosby and Juran recognize some advantages of having a single supplier; however they take a more conservative view. They advocate for a company to try to reduce the number of suppliers they work with but still stress importance on different suppliers for key products (Suarez, 1992, p. 20). That way, in the event that a company’s main supplier has an unforeseen event limiting production (such as an employee strike or a product backorder) there is a backup and it will not limit the company’s output and production.
Even though Deming, Juran, and Crosby view management commitment as the most fundamentally important aspect in quality management they emphasize the manager’s role in participation differently. Crosby relies heavily on “zero defects” and believes it is not the workers fault if defects are found in a product but that management failed to provide an example in which employees emulate (Smith, 2011, p. 46). If management does not portray the importance of obtaining a product that contains zero defects the workers will follow their lead and the product will lack quality.
In turn, this may produce a product that the customer does not want or is not satisfied with. This may also cause loss of revenue or clients. Juran’s concept advocates for education of managers and believes human relation problems and resistance to change is an important fact causing quality issues (Smith, 2011, p. 42). He believes communication between managers and employees about the importance of quality is essential. Manager’s decisions and actions must be geared towards obtaining set goals, providing the necessary resources and serving on quality councils and quality improvement teams (Suarez, 1992, p. 0). Demining, however, has specific rules and responsibilities of managers and a company’s leadership, He believes that it is not the manager’s job to point fingers and to keep records of failures, but to remove barriers and help create a culture that promotes helping others do a better job and to feel pride in their craft (Suarez, 1992, p. 20). In comparison of the three gurus, the person who had the most influence over the quality management movement was Joseph M Juran. Juran has been called the father of quality and is referred to as the greatest quality giant of the 20th century (Smith, 2011, p. 2). Juran’s approach to achieving the highest quality product is based on a strategic approach. This allows the quality issues to be resolved one by one as they arise and on a per project basis. Juran developed many concepts to support his philosophy including the “spiral of progress in quality,” the “breakthrough sequence,” the “project by project approach,” the “Juran trilogy” and the principle of the “vital few and trivial many”( Smith, 2011, p. 42). It is sometimes a lost idea by companies (especially the larger they get) that they have employees working for them.
Everyone is human. Instead of a very aggressive statistical approach to quality management like Deming promotes, or a “one size fits all” type of structured roadmap for management to follow like Crosby believes, Juan promotes teamwork. His project by project approach allows changes to be customized based on needs. Juran acknowledges there can be different levels of quality and that it is not cut and dry. The characteristics of quality he defines are structural, sensory, time oriented, commercial and ethical (Kerzner, 2009, p. 880).
Any one of these characteristics can be mediocre and it does not mean that the product is not quality, it means there can be improvements made to a certain aspect of the product to meet the customer’s needs and improve on the quality. However his most influential concept is the “Juran trilogy”. The Juran trilogy consists of three concepts: quality improvement, quality planning and quality control (Kerzner, 2009, p. 878). The trilogy makes it clear that one concept will not be improved without the other two since they are all interrelated to each other.
According to Juran, the starting point in the trilogy is quality planning by creating a process to meet established quality goals ( Juran, 2005, p. 66). This is the first line of defense from poor quality products and a vital step in improving quality. Without a plan there is no road map on how to achieve certain goals. Quality planning means goals are established, implementation and resource plans are made and a plan is created to achieve the level of quality desired (Juran, 2005, p. 67).
Once the plans are in place quality can be measured and controlled by monitoring the process and performance and it can be compared against the objectives (Juran, 2005, p. 67). Once the plans are in place and the control and monitoring of quality is going on, improvements can be made based on feedback or observations by improving employee morale, increasing profitability, and satisfying the customer’s needs (Juran, 2005, p. 67). In addition to Juran’s trilogy, another benefit to his contribution of quality is he sees problems as projects.
This allows improvements to be made on a per project basis. By focusing on problems as projects, it helps focus improvement on specific areas and can provide short term results within a long-term strategy (Suarez, 1992, p. 21). Juran also acknowledges the human relation in projects. He believed human relation problems were issues to isolate and resolve in order for quality to be its best in a product. He considered education of management was important to resolve conflicts when they arise (Smith, 2011, p. 42). He thought the need for change is the answer to quality problems.
Without education managers did not have the proper tools to help create the environment for change to take place. His “fitness for use” concept attributes quality of design, conformance, availability, safety and field of use to the satisfaction of the customer and the real measurement of the success of a quality product (Kerzner, 2009, p. 878). Juran believed quality was defined by the customer and meeting their expectations. Anyone affected by the product was considered a customer from those who deal with the product in the developmental stages to those who deal with the finished product (Suarez, 1992, p. ). Juran focused on the human aspect in quality all around. The biggest disadvantage to Juran’s approach is also on his quality improvement views. He believes in the trilogy to achieve improvements in quality, however, he does not focus too much on the prevention of problems to create poor quality products (Suarez, 1992, p. 19). Juran’s focus is more on solving the problems that arise then to prevent them which can mean there will always be processes to follow and the chance of a poor quality product and the possible loss of a customer.