Monday, March 26, 2012

ASQ Influential Voices: Selling Quality

In his blog this month, ASQ CEO, Paul Borawski asks the question, "How do you sell quality?"

As with any selling proposition, you have to demonstrate an adequate return on investment. Executives are continually seeking ways to create both short and long-term value for their customers, employees, and shareholders. Fortunately for quality professionals, that is exactly what a sound quality program can deliver!

When charged with building a quality management system (QMS) for our organization, my first step was to establish a quality “scorecard” that would measure the strategic and financial results of our efforts. We started measuring things like defect reductions, customer loyalty levels, process improvement savings, and employee satisfaction with the quality system. In less than a year, we started to report significant improvements in all categories, which translated into real financial savings for the organization. Additionally, we were able to show a statistical correlation between these results and the quality program.

Short-term financial results can sell a quality program. But what gets me really excited about quality, is its ability to position a company for long-term sustainability and growth. Quality is more than just a system or program – it’s a never-ending pursuit of perfection. To survive in today’s economy, companies need the ability to foresee and adapt to change.

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