A Universal Approach to Managing Quality – a Bow to Dr. Joseph M. Juran

Dr Joseph Juran was a leader in Quality education.

Dr Joseph Juran was a leader in Quality education.

I was going through the training manual I received at the Juran Institute and came across an article written by Dr. Joseph Juran “The Quality Trilogy” published in Quality Progress August 1986. He said, “The underlying concept of the quality trilogy is that managing for quality consists of three basic quality-oriented processes.

  • Quality planning
  • Quality control
  • Quality improvement.”

The article is well worth reading. It looks at the cost of poor quality and cross-functional management. He said without change there will be constant waste. During change there will be increased costs, but after improvement margins will be higher and the increased cost of change can be re-couped.

Our class had the honor of having part of our training done by Dr. Juran himself. While not physically imposing, he was a dynamic individual with a dry sense of humor. Watch his training tapes and you will understand. He was one of the hardest working professionals I have ever met and was a prolific writer, continuing to produce works right up to his death in 2008 at the age of 104.

Juran took the works of Vilfredo Pareto and applied it to the broader world. Pareto’s theory had only been applied to wealth distribution – 20% of the population held 80% of the wealth. Dr. Juran applied the same principle to quality issues. And found 80% of the problems can be followed back to 20% of the causes or “the vital few”. Juran used this method to determine which issues to address first. It was a key method to allocate scarce resources.

Juran focused on the human element and the resistance to change.  Read Management Breakthrough, it is still applicable. He looked outside the factory and applied his systems to the nonmanufacturing processes, especially those thought to be service related. This was mind-boggling to many. The misconception is still prevalent today when people look at ISO 9001 and think it is a manufacturing system.

So if you are interested, join me in a trip down memory lane and through the teachings of Dr. Juran. I would be interested to hear from others who have had this training. What are the key points or “Ah ha” moments this training inspired?