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Commitment of Top Management in TQM Essay

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Updated: May 2nd, 2020

The article being analyzed is titled ‘Breaking through Barriers to TQM

Effectiveness: Lack of Commitment of Upper-Level Management’. It’s authored by Ebrahim, Pei-Chun and Naser. It is based on the topic of Total Quality Management (TQM) and explores the barriers to TQM in general paying special attention to the lack of commitment of Upper – Level Management to TQM. The arguments in the article are based on various theorists of TQM such as Powell, Black, Porter, and Kanji among others.

Each of the theorists gives his or her version of the reasons why TQM is not effective in many organisations. The key reasons why top management is not fully committed to TQM include lack of knowledge about TQM, mobility of management and the fear of taking risks through TQM initiatives (Ebrahim, Pei-Chun & Naser, 2005).

Total Quality Management (TQM) is a business strategy employed by companies or profit making originations to increase customer satisfaction as well as improve their internal processes (McNamara, 2011). The main implementation issues associated with TQM include understanding of TQM and what it entails, establishing an organisational culture which can support the implementation of TQM, aligning TQM implementation with the priorities of the organisation and understanding of the time frames necessary for the implementation of TQM (Seattle, 2003).

One of the reasons why Upper-Level Management is not committed to TQM is lack of knowledge on TQM. While it is true that some of the Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) may lack knowledge on TQM, research shows that majority actually have the knowledge and understanding of the concept and its importance. In fact, what seems to be a correct argument in the article is that lack of commitment by Upper-Level Management should be viewed from multiple dimensions (Barnard, 1948).

As outlined in the article, the fact that many organisations keep on changing CEOs every now and then appears to be the major reason as to why Upper- Level Management is not committed to TQM. Obviously, the CEOs do not see the need to engage in quality management because they are not sure whether they will remain in the organisations to see the output. If organisations would like their top management to be committed to TQM, then they should reduce management mobility, especially for the CEOs because doing so would enable the CEOs to invest in TQM without any fears or doubts (Crosby, 1979).

Organisations in the UAE could benefit from the concepts advanced in the article. For example, organisations could invest more in training Upper- Level Management as well as the lower level employees on TQM. They could also invest in deploying resources for managing organisational change, which comes with TQM initiatives.

They can also benefit by employee training and development, customer satisfaction improvement, process management as well as product design. All these taken together can make organisations in the UAE, especially those in construction and hospitality industries make huge returns due to improved organisational efficiency.

What I have learned from the article is that a comprehensive approach is necessary to ensure effective TQM. What this means is that it is not enough to look into one aspect of an organisation in regard to TQM, but rather, organisations should look into how various aspects of TQM relate to each other. In summary, organisations should look into the relationship between three major reasons advanced to explain the low commitment of Upper- Level Management to TQM.

These include lack of knowledge on TQM, management mobility and the fear of taking risks through TQM initiatives. Organisations need to minimize management mobility so as to give the top leadership an ample environment to initiate and implement TQM practices without the fear of losing their job.

References

Barnard, C. (1948). Organisation and Management. Cambridge MA: Harvard University Press.

Crosby, P. B. (1979). Quality is Free: The Art of Making Quality Certain. New York: New American Library.

Ebrahim, S., Pei-Chun, L., & Naser, S.G. (2005). Breaking through Barriers to TQM Effectiveness: Lack of Commitment of Upper-Level Management’. Total Quality Management Vol. 16, No. 8–9, 1009–1021, October–November 2005.

McNamara, C. (2011). .

Seattle, (2003). Primus Customer Motorola Successfully Embodies Six Sigma Quality Initiative for 25 Years; Primus.

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