Management 301: TQM

This paper discusses key factors that contribute to building organizational excellence and quality in most award winning companies in Australia. There are many rankings of organizations in terms of most satisfying and rewarding places to work. However, there is no data regarding how management of these world –class organizations maintain their greatness and their competitive advantage in the market.

Australian Business Excellence Framework (ABEF) is about managing organizations and utilizing organizational strategies as a guide for improving core elements. Many organizations adopted a quality management as its framework of excellence to provide guidance to their employees. They have been trying to improve some aspects of the organization such as: process improvement, customer focus, management by data and facts, adding values, building partnership and innovation. However, there are challenges involved in pursuing excellence.According to researchers, some critical quality factors managers use are:

  1. Recognizing the importance of Total Quality Management (TQM)
  2. Understanding the relationship between TQM and ISP 9000
  3. Incorporating quality objectives into the planning process
  4. Implementing and ensuring TQM at every level of organization

(Sebastianelli & Tamimi, 2003)

Other studies have pointed out that quality sustainability is achieved through focusing on:

  1. Senior management
  2. Driving force
  3. Human infrastructure
  4. Management systems to drive and monitor
  5. Audits and assessments
  6. Quality framework
  7. Mapping customer satisfaction
  8. Information technology to bind systems and provide information

All studies support that execution and leadership are the most vital key drives of successful performance management systems. Top management needs to be committed to implementing strategy – supports and drive at senior levels, as well as middle managers. It is vital in driving excellence in organizations using consistent messages of corporate strategies from the top level to bottom level of organizational hierarchy. This creates culture that promotes business excellence, an approach compared to simply functional and specialist skills that meet the role of profiling. Therefore, these organizations transit to value based structures that provide employees with more freedom in making decisions as long as they are in support of organizational values. Employees need to have access to data and information so they can better identify the needs of the customer, as well as a way of receiving customer feedback in respect to products and services. It should be utilized as a part of improving customer services and help to build improved infrastructure in providing However, there is a need for self- evaluation and accountability for its employees in organizations. Effective communication and knowledge of how to use information in decision making processes, as well as the organization has to do with facilities training and development. All of this will benefit the employees and customer satisfaction. Organizations face many challenges to facilitate an improved leadership support, drive, and uniformity throughout the organization and communicating strategy and making it meaningful for its employees at all levels.

Alan Brown. (2013). Managing challenges in sustaining business excellence. International Journal of Quality & Reliability Management, Vol. 30 Iss: 4, pp.461 – 475 DOI: 10.1108/02656711311308420

Critical learning themes in project management education: Implication for blended learning. Why should we study project management?

This article provides insights as to why students are taking project management classes. Students can develop a wide range of skills that require accomplishing successful projects by using “transferable skills” that can be taught in classroom and “e-learning environments”. The popularity of project management is due to the ability to accomplish projects on time and within budgets. In order to survive in today’s world, employees will have fundamental skills that will help maximize performance such as teamwork, problem solving–analytical, research gathering, time management, information synthesizing, and utilizing high technology tools.

Project management is crucial in the development of any organization. Everyone faces project management at one time or another in their careers. Project management consumes large amounts of resources needed to manage resources efficiently. Project management is a multi-complexed skilled discipline. The importance of the field grows larger due to the acceleration of modern organizations that gain competitive advantages.

Students were interested in obtaining skills through transferable skills, skills not specific to any field, for example, writing, communicating, problem solving, and knowing the field of technology. Critical and creative thinking can be applied in classrooms. Communication, leadership, planning and teamwork fall into transferable skills. The results of research categorized “e –learning environments” to be incorporated as practical and dependable methods of learning, where students perform decision –making games. These platforms will become crucial for collaborative and flexible learning that will help to support face-to-face instruction.

Project management is one of the most standard and extensively applied management systems and techniques in many areas. Yet, it is probably the most misused generic term in the business world that vaguely defines terminology. In practice, the focus of project management balances on three elements: resources (people, material, and equipment), time (critical paths, task’s length, and dependencies), and scope (project size, objectives, and requirements). It is the entrepreneurial side of the business, all about allocating resources and managing risks at minimal cost to the organization.

E-learning environments facilitates opportunities to explore technology and encourage students to become independent workers, critical thinkers, and lifelong learners. It also makes students responsible for taking control of their own learning and provides them with access to resources with expertise to facilitate optimum exploitations. Other skills that were also important for students to acquire included planning, controlling, and assessing risks in projects. The class offered a problem-based learning assignment as the most valuable experience.

To my surprise, I am in favor of learning more about project management. Just by being exposed to the practical application of concepts such as Project Review Technique (PERT) and Critical Path Method (CAP), I could see much potential in applications of managerial accounting and benefits of project management. I have my own personal life philosophy of the project management concept which states: “I need to do my homework or tasks at work before the deadline so if I run into any unknown territory or difficulties I can manage them before they are due.”

Ashleigh, Melanie (02/2012)“Critical learning themes in project management education: Implications for blended learning”. International journal of project management (0263-7863)30 (2), p. 153.