Newsletter – November, 2022

On My Mind
Product and service quality were both adversely affected the past two-plus years for many organizations due to disrupted operations, dispersed workforces, supply chain issues, and global conflicts. The Health &Safety performance category has understandably been receiving much of the attention of senior executives for organizational survival—sometimes at the expense of product and service quality. Now is an opportune time for senior executives to declare superior quality a strategic intent and develop the organizational capabilities to achieve it. Achieving superior product and service quality in the marketplace—without adversely affecting health and safety—will require an investment of time and money. Those organizations who focus on achieving superior product and service quality without adversely affecting health and safety will create a competitive advantage and/or core competence.

Interesting Stories
The Ford Motor Company (“Ford”) has once again placed “Quality” as a top priority. This reminds me of what Ford did in the 1980s under Don Petersen who was the CEO of Ford from 1985 to 1990. You might recall the Ford slogan “Quality is Job One” which the company used in the 1980s and 1990s. I’ve seen many organizations “start and stop” their Quality initiatives several times over the years. It runs contrary to the philosophy of continuous improvement. Leaders of organizations should keep in mind at least two of Dr. W. Edwards Deming’s Fourteen Points: Point #1 – Create constancy of purpose for improvement of product and service and Point #5 – Improve constantly and forever the system of production and service. While difficult – it is worth it

Company News
I’ll be presenting on Superior Quality as a Competitive Advantage on November 2, 2022 at the Minnesota American Society for Quality Annual Conference at the Minneapolis Convention Center. My next public Strategic Improvement Black Belt course starts January 18, 2023 and my next public Strategic Improvement Green Belt course starts February 14, 2023. The course brochures are available on the PUBLIC SEMINARS page of this website. The full public Winter 2022 / Spring 2023 schedule will be available November 18, 2022 on the same website page.

Intriguing Reads
I recently studied Volume 1 Number 1 of the Harvard Business Review (HBR) which was published in October of 1922. It is hard to believe the HBR is 100 years old! Some of the content in that first publication is still relevant today. Here are the topics in the first HBR: Essential Groundwork for a Broad Executive Theory; The Taxation of Capital Gains; Bank Management and the Business Cycle; The Future of American Export Trade; Creditors’ Committee Receiverships; Bank Reserves under the Federal Reserve System; The Railroad Consolidation Plan; The Effect of Hedging Upon Flour Mill Control; The Use and Limitations of Psychological Tests; Some Relations between Technical and Business Training; Significance of Stock-turn in Retail and Wholesale Merchandising; Department Contents; Summaries of Business Research; Case Studies in Business; Reviews of Business Literature; and Book Notices. What will they say one hundred years from now about the contents of the October of 2022 HBR?