The Importance of Leadership in Quality Management
This paper is aimed at outlining the main points of leadership in quality management. It discusses the importance of quality management in company’s development. Moreover, this paper draws attention to the examples of leadership in quality management. It outlines the main keys to success of Coca-Cola in the direction of quality management. In addition, it discusses the main achievements of the company in the sphere of quality. The paper also demonstrates the importance of leadership in quality management, including different industries. It shows the main issues of leadership in quality of the oil industry of the Gulf region. In general, this paper describes the importance quality in the contemporary world of business.
Keywords: economy, quality, management, leadership.
The contemporary world of business is full of competition. Nowadays, many companies are struggling to maintain a balance between competition and the quality of products. It is an undeniable fact that there are many useful tools in business competition. However, one of the most effective and essential means of leading business are leadership and quality management. Leadership in quality management has become a powerful element of the companies that have a big desire to develop. According to Manghani (2011), it helps “to achieve high-quality processes, procedures, systems, and people, with eventual high-quality products and services”. If a company wants to make a breakthrough, it is necessary to make a change. Companies that do not want to introduce new methods of management are destined to stay at the same point of development. The first step towards development is an appropriate quality management at all stages of the manufacturing process.
Quality has always been an outstanding tool that has a big influence on company’s performance. It is essential to take into consideration all aspects of customers’ requirements in order to satisfy them with an appropriate quality of goods. Quality management went through many stages of development in its history. In the past, companies used to control it instead of managing it. Nowadays, it is not enough to control quality. The contemporary world of business has created appropriate conditions to manage quality. It is a fact that quality management can give companies a wide range of advantages. A company that is able to manage quality can quickly adjust to the changeable environment of the surrounding world. Quality management means that a company regulates its activity due to the external and internal factors of its performance. The external factors include the changeable environment of the market, tastes and requirements of the customers, relations with suppliers, and influence of competitors. Employees base the internal factors on the comprehension of the company’s goals. It is essential to make the staff quality oriented. Subordinates should be interested in making a high quality product. A company gets competitive benefits when all its elements work in the same direction.
That is the reason why leadership in quality management helps companies remain on the top list of manufactures. Quality management means a constant evaluation of customers’ needs, tastes, and requirements. In general, total quality management means that a company pays much attention to quality at all stages of the manufacturing processes. The whole performance of the company should be penetrated with high quality aspects. The key to the successful leadership in quality lies in total quality management. It means that a company should pay attention to every process running in order to make a product. Total quality management is a continuous process and cannot be used only once. If a company wants to get results from its usage, then it should implement and follow this form of management from the beginning of the performance. Total quality management means that a company continuously works in the direction of quality. It is impossible to launch quality orientation only once and then put it aside. A company willing to make a breakthrough or hold leading positions should adhere to the principles of total quality management on a constant basis.
Leadership in quality management can become a secret weapon of a company that struggles to occupy a larger share of the market. Quality has always been an element of the performance, which depends on the customers’ requirements. At the same time, it can push away or attract more customers. A sensitive issue requires much attention and knowledge in order to get benefits from its usage. A company should realize that quality orientation changes both internal and external environment. Customers tend to criticize products and services of a company as they get used to a better quality and want to get even more. The internal environment represented by employees tries to adjust to the new rules of company’s performance. It is always hard to teach employees to work in a new direction. However, this is the stage where leadership starts its manifestation. Employees should trust the top management of a company and know that their activity has a direct influence on the company’s profits. The staff should be motivated to bring better results. Moreover, top management of the company should implement quality management into the strategy. According to Stainow (2011), “Leaders provide a unity of purpose, while also establishing the direction of the organization.” Making high quality an orientation of the company will always improve the quality of products and services. This is the first step of gaining leadership in quality management.
It is necessary to develop plans due to the aim of the quality improvement. Subordinates should realize the importance of high quality performance. According to Symes (n.d.), “In companies where quality management has been fused with organizational behavior, employees proactively manage the customers’ experience to ensure satisfaction”. It should be noted that employees of a company do have a direct connection to customers. It is essential to explain the staff in what way teamwork in the direction of quality management will bring a company to success. Total quality management means the implementation of quality focus on all elements of the company. According to Tracy (2012), “Integrity is, perhaps, the most valued and respected quality of leadership”. It means that a company will benefit from a constant improvement of all processes bound into the general system. Taking into consideration employees means that they can influence the customers’ opinions about a company. A brilliant customer service is a mandatory element of a company willing to hold a leading position in quality management. Moreover, employees who work with customers are forming the company’s reputation. Customers will always come back to those companies where they get an outstanding service and high quality products. It is an undeniable fact that leadership in quality management is directly connected to the company’s reputation. Once reputation has been lost, it cannot be recovered.
Leadership in quality management is a complex aim, and it requires many changes within the company. If a company decides to change its direction of activity, it should change its organizational behavior. It is not enough to introduce new goals of a company; the whole manufacturing process should be transformed. A company will not be competitive enough if it does not combine its quality management with organizational behavior. All elements should work in the same direction in order to bring benefits. Firstly, a company should realize that improvement of its activity would open new boundaries of the familiar market. Secondly, a company should be ready to be competitive enough to hold a leading position in international competition. That is the reason why it is necessary to make a company strong at all levels. Lastly, a company should use all resources effectively, and people are the main resource of profit. According to Symes (n.d.), “Management must engage in the activities that alter the company’s culture in a way that increases the quality of a customer’s experience, leading to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty, as well as referral business from the existing customers.” It means that a company should pay much attention to organizational behavior.
Employees should be the first element of changes that are to be introduced within the company. It is essential not only to show staff that changes are necessary, but also to involve them into the general process of company’s improvement. Employees should have enough authority to regulate the satisfaction of customers using products of a company. Employees should be given the ability to make a change. Employees who are involved into the process of planning and introducing new methods of quality improvement build trusting relations with the top management of a company. Moreover, when a company involves employees, it can evaluate those subordinates who are worth getting a promotion. A company aims at development and extension of its boundaries. A branch of a company will bring benefits, if someone who is familiar with the company’s principles regulates it.
An appropriate example of the company that pays much attention to quality is Coca-Cola. This company experienced many difficulties on its way to success. However, there is no doubt that it gained popularity and stability due to the high standards in quality of its products. Customers form a perfect source of company’s inspiration. Coca-Cola gained its popularity due to the constant regulation of products quality. A company has always been adhering to the customers’ tastes and requirements. This helped the company develop its internal quality system to the system regulated by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI). A company decided to make a big step towards new certification in order to increase its sphere of activity around the world. Standards of the International Standards Organization (ISO) and certifications of the GFSI allowed Coca-Cola to penetrate its activity with new high quality requirements. Moreover, the company takes care not only of its products, but also of the environmental problems. The company has a vision plan, which focuses on company’s profit, safety of products, as well as safety of the environment and the planet in general. Coca-Cola has proved that adherence to high quality gives a wide range of opportunities to save the environment and, at the same time, to satisfy the demands of the customers. High quality means that the company minimizes its impact on the surrounding world. The company has also joined the GFSI on the rights of the member who can share practices with other companies. According to Lupo (2013), the company struggled “to integrate others’ best practices into its system and has become more open about the sharing of its own.” Coca-Cola has successfully obtained a reputation of the company that has been providing its customer with the high quality products.
Leadership in quality management is a vital part of any company regardless of its sphere of activity. High quality can become a target of any company that aims to improve its competitiveness. The issue of quality management can be related to any company in the world, including countries of the Gulf region. The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) includes six countries: Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE. This region is known as one of the best exporters of gas and crude oil. Moreover, the GCC offers a diversity of the fuel and mining resources. In 2012, the European Union imported around 83% of energy resources from the Gulf region. According to Qureshi (2012), “The growth of the energy industry and the pivotal role specifically played by the oil and gas industry make it the engine of development for the GCC countries.” This region experienced a rapid development, which resulted in economic growth. However, only 4% of jobs are in the field of the oil industry. This sphere needs development in order to bring economic development of the region to the new level. The GCC is a large territory that can offer many resources to companies from all over the world. Many countries depend on the trade relations with this region. Thus, it is necessary to keep high quality standards in the oil industry. It can be both dangerous and profitable. Companies should stick to the high quality standards on a constant basis. The world has already suffered after the BP deepwater rig explosion in 2010. According to Osgood (2012), “the company lost $10 billion, 11 people lost their lives, and the environmental damage was inestimable.” It is one of the examples that pushes the companies of the oil industry to develop.
Despite the fact that the GCC offers a wide range of energy resources, it faces a leadership challenge in many spheres of life. Leadership in quality management is the main issue of this region. The GCC is a leader in providing other countries with the energy resources; though, it does not offer many jobs in this industry. It happens because education does not have enough basements for technical professions. Moreover, in order to increase quality in all aspects, it is necessary to involve people of all genders. It is essential to break a stereotype that only men can be involved in the technical sphere. Education needs a range of changes and reforms. According to Qureshi (2012), “In addition to the integration of the female population into the industry, one of the main leadership challenges for the oil companies is to connect effectively with the education system in their respective countries.” Education is the basement of any development. The oil industry requires many specialists who can introduce and implement new technologies, as well as brand new techniques. It is an undeniable fact that all developments should have a scientific basement. This will essentially outline the general competitiveness of the GCC. Leadership in quality management should be based on the developments of new scientists and engineers brought by improved education. Innovations and research will lead to a breakthrough of the GCC. It will also allow the companies to open new boundaries of their activities. The combination of leadership in quality management and improved education will bring a wide range of competitive benefits to the companies of the GCC region. If companies want to develop and improve their activities, it is necessary to take into consideration all aspects of the environment. In case of the Gulf region, it is not enough to pay attention only to competitors and customers. Companies of this region should think globally in order to get competitive benefits. Despite the fact that this region operates successfully, it needs developments. The development of the Gulf region will benefit not only its countries, but also will improve international cooperation.
It is obvious that the contemporary world of business is based on many elements. Quality has become a vital part of every company. Nowadays, it is impossible to make business without paying attention to quality management. There are many examples that prove that leadership in quality touches upon many spheres of life. Regardless of the industry, companies strive to develop due to quality management. The more a company does in order to meet requirements of its customers, the more it develops. The high quality products will always be an indicator of company’s success and development. The Gulf region is not an exception. It is a region that is rich in mineral resources, which offers a diversity of goods. However, even rich regions need to pay attention to quality management in order to hold the leading positions. Regardless of the industry, a company that is willing to develop should pay attention to quality management. Customers get more attracted when they get high quality products and services. A company should show that its consumers will get a wide range of benefits if they use its products. When a company proves its professionalism, it obtain trust from its customers. It is the element that lies in the basement of leadership in quality management. It is obvious that a successful development of any company depends on its ability to manage quality. Thus, quality is the basement of any development.
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