Cultural Differences Between Tq and Traditional Organizations

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Cultural Differences Between TQ and Traditional Organizations Some of the contrasting differences between modern TQ organizations and traditional organizations that pre-dated the quality revolution are summarized below.

Organizational structures: Traditional management views an enterprise as a collection of separate, highly specialized individual performers and units, linked within a functional hierarchy. Lateral connections are made by intermediaries close to the top of the provinces. TQ views the enterprise as a system of interdependent processes, linked laterally, over time, through a network of collaborating (internal and external) suppliers and customers. Processes are connected to the enterprise’s mission and purpose, through a hierarchy of micro and macro processes. Every process contains subprocesses and is itself contained within a higher order process. This structure of processes is repeated throughout the hierarchy.

Role of people: Traditional management views people as a commodity, virtually interchangeable, and to be developed based on the perceived needs of the enterprise. People are passive contributors, with little autonomy, doing what they are told and nothing more. TQ views people as the enterprise’s true competitive edge. Leadership provides people with opportunities for personal growth and development. People take joy and pride through learning and accomplishment, and enhance the capability of the enterprise to succeed. People are active contributors, valued for their creativity and intelligence. Every person is a process manager, presiding over the transformation of inputs to outputs of greater value to the enterprise and to the consumer.

Definition of quality: In traditional management, quality is the adherence to internal specifications and standards. The absence of defects, therefore, defines quality. Inspection of people’s work by others is necessary to control defects. Innovation is not required. In TQ, quality is defined in a...
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