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Which TQM Practices Really Matter: An Empirical Investigation

Summary: Research leading toward a standard definition of TQM is reviewed here, making the case that a clearer definition of TQM is emerging from the literature. This definition is necessary prior to further research in the area, especially in light of the many commercial programs all claiming to be TQM. The authors' review leads to a set of constructs describing the use of TQM in practice, from which a questionnaire is developed to elicit information from companies regarding their quality practices. The primary purpose of this article is to use the information elicited from companies to build a descriptive model of the relationship between these TQM practices and measures of organizational performance.In analyzing these relationships using the LISREL software, a full model certifying key relationships was not certified. Within this larger hypothesized model, however, many strong relationships were confirmed. Strongest among these were measures relating operational performance to company financial measures, suggesting a back-to-basics stance in quality management. Another, surprising, find was a negative relationship between employee fulfillment and other success measures.

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  • Topics: Total Quality Management
  • Keywords: Management styles,Total Quality Management (TQM),Statistical methods,Comparison
  • Author: Grandzol, John R.; Gershon, Mark
  • Journal: Quality Management Journal