Reflecting on TQM – Total Quality Management Back in 1982

39 Years ago today I met with Bill Smith, an engineer at Motorola, often credited with starting Six Sigma at Motorola.

I was there to discuss with him my training development assignment – intended to be a modular series of self-paced training modules on the 7 Basic Quality Tools. Micro-learning from back in the day if you will.

These modules were components of my first CAD – Curriculum Architecture Design effort – as an employee. I’ve done 76 as a consultant – as of November 1982. I’ve told the story of that first CAD effort for Manufacturing Supervisors across Motorola’s 5 Business Sectors (SBUs) – here.

Bill was helpful and gave me a armful of documents that he had a secretary reproduce for me – that I picked up later as I traveled back and forth from my current office to my new office. You can see that on the day that I first met with Bill Smith – I was also packing my cubical office – as MTEC was moving from The Gould Center (with a huge Picasso sculpture outside the front door) to HQ’s 6th floor – the Tower.

I got my Performance Orientation as an ISDer – on day 1 back in August 1979 – from Rummler, Gilbert and Mager resources that I was asked to read as part of my OnBoarding into the world of Training, Performance-Based Training, in my first job out of college with my Radio-TV-Film degree from Kansas University. That was at Wickes Lumber in Saginaw MI. I was also introduced to NSPI (now ISPI) in September 1979.

My 2nd job, at Motorola, which started in June of 1982 after my wife got transferred, gave me an introduction to VR – Variability Reduction – the forerunner of Six Sigma – and Lean of the expanding world of TQM – Total Quality Management.

That gave me a somewhat unique perspective as an ISD Consultant – starting in November 1982 – as I was able to analyze Performance – ideal and gaps – with a different mindset than my fellow ISDers/IDers – a mindset heavily influenced by Ishikawa’s Diagram and later I came to realize that my frame was probably influenced by Gilbert’s BEM as well. Those ideas – and probably many others – morphed into this graphic…

I sometimes present that graphic … as this next graphic … as I always anchor my Instructional products (Group-Paced, Coached, Self-Paced modes of Instruction using any blend of Media) back to the authentic Performance Competence requirements of the learners/Performers … Back-on-the-Job …

My approach to performance-based Instructional Analysis – has always been the Secret Sauce for me, professionally, for 4 decades now.

I’ve been influenced by many thought leaders in Performance Improvement (PI) – by many names for PI, going back to my first days in the business.

Lucky me. My deeper orientation to Quality at Motorola prompted me to write this White Paper in May of 1982 – the “White paper” idea/lable coming for NBC’s video White Paper about Japanese Quality. On June 24, 1980, Americans widely viewed a NBC documentary called “If Japan Can… Why Can’t We.”

The program, part of NBC’s White Paper series, prominently featured Dr. W. Edwards Deming.

Deming had just recently refused to come visit us at MTEC – because our response to his question, “Will your CEO be there” – as “no.” We thought he was quite arrogant. But he was right.

MTEC White Paper 1982 – 39 page PDF – a white paper I wrote while at MTEC – Motorola’s Training & Education Center – in May 1982 where I proposed combining the concepts, models, methods, processes, tools and techniques of Geary Rummler, Neil Rackham (of SPIN Selling fame) and of Deming, Juran and Crosby (and other quality gurus). This led to my boss taking that idea and changing it to become a Geary Rummler Do-It-Yourself Consulting Kit – which after I left in October 1982 became the training course created by Geary Rummler called OPS (Organization Performance Systems).

It’s Not All About Learning. It’s All About Performance.

My 15th book – published a few months ago – goes into the greatest detail – and covers how to conduct performance-based Instructional Analysis throughout the Instructional Development process.

See more about this book – here.

And/or see my Author’s Page at Amazon – here – for information about all 15 of my books.


4 comments on “Reflecting on TQM – Total Quality Management Back in 1982

  1. Pingback: Not that it would improve my bottom of the barrel position, but… | EPPIC - Pursuing Performance

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  3. Pingback: 39 Years Ago I Wrote this White Paper for Motorola – Proposing an Integrated Performance System | EPPIC - Pursuing Performance

  4. Pingback: 39 Years I Wrote a Whitepaper on Combining Multiple Performance Improvement Methods | EPPIC - Pursuing Performance

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