Magazine article Personnel Journal

Communicating TQM to Small Groups Improves Understanding

Magazine article Personnel Journal

Communicating TQM to Small Groups Improves Understanding

Article excerpt

Last year. Conner Peripherals Inc. in San Jose, California, introduced its quality effort with an employee video, newsletter articles and large employee meetings. It was the kind of approach that Tom Varian, vice president of communication for Organizational Dynamics Inc. in Burlington, Massachusetts, calls "hoopla." The message got out to employees that quality and customer service were goals worth pursuing, but none of the communication answered the employees' basic question: "What does this mean to me?"

Ted Cocheu, Conner's director of organizational development, says that the firm learned this through an employee survey that was designed to determine the effectiveness of its communication effort. "We learned that employees understood and supported the new direction the company was taking, but they didn't know how it would impact their individual jobs," Cocheu explains.

Questions like, "What does this mean to me in sales?" "How does this affect the engineering function?" and "What should the marketing department be aware of?" were common. Today, Conner is in the process of redesigning its communication strategy to answer some of those questions. …

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