The Quest for Competitiveness: Lessons from America's Productivity and Quality Leaders
This volume examines the experiences of well-managed firms that attempt to improve quality, productivity, innovation, technology, and human resources. The editors have brought together papers by the best known authorities on effective policies and practical guidelines for enhancing productivity and quality, combining them with those by leaders of America's high performance companies that describe their actual experiences with productivity and quality. The resulting synthesis of experience and concepts will be of significant value not only to executives and managers attempting to implement productivity-enhancing programs within their own firms but also to business and management programs charged with training America's future corporate leaders. In addition to describing policies and programs, the volume provides a framework for implementation including creating awareness, measuring inputs and outputs, designing and initiating programs, and maintaining follow-up procedures. The contributors also examine public policy changes aimed at encouraging R&D and capital investment, eliminating government constraints in the global marketplace, and improving education and training.
Divided into four parts, the volume begins with an introductory chapter by the editors which explores the critical relationships among productivity, quality, and competitive advantage. The second section contains specific policy recommendations from such renowned experts as W. Edwards Deming, Joseph M. Juran, Thomas J. Peters, Armand W. Feigenbaum, Jackson Grayson, and Rosabeth Moss Kanter. In Part III, corporate leaders from Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Texas Instruments, Ford, 3M, Nucor, and others detail their experiences with productivity and quality programs. Contributions from two winners of the Baldrige National Quality Awards (Globe Metallurgical and Xerox) as well as from Florida Power & Light, the first company outside Japan to win the coveted Deming Prize, are included in this section. Throughout, the contributors stress the need to be customer-driven; the importance of nurturing a cohesive corporate culture to support the demands for innovation, flexibility, and ever-increasing levels of productivity and quality; and the critical role of manufacturing strategy in enhancing productivity and quality. The final section presents managerial guidelines for competitive success.
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