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Measuring the Payoff From Improved Customer Service

In recent years, we have often been approached by senior executives with questions along the following lines: "I hear all this hype about providing better customer service as part of my Total Quality Management program, and it sounds intriguing, but the thing is, how do I justify investing in it? I...

Third-Generation R&D Management

In the decades ahead, competition will grow increasingly international and will focus increasingly on technological strengths. Financial and physical resources, work skills, and technology are highly mobile. The firms that succeed in global competition will be those that employ technology to...

Europe 1992: Issues and Opportunities

During the whole postwar period, Western Europe has been moving in fits and starts toward more intimate forms of economic cohesion that transcend the traditional relationships between individual nation states. Some visionaries have even promulgated ideas of eventual political union.

Consumer-Driven Innovative Product Development

To achieve Total Quality Management (TQM), companies must be customer-driven. In other words, they must translate what their customers want and need into products and services that fit those customers' criteria for purchase and repurchase decisions. To do so, companies must be able to measure the...

Viewpoint Achieving Environmental Excellence: Ten Tools for...

Achieving environmental excellence means addressing issues of planetary - if not cosmic - importance:How do we make sure that the products and by-products of our industrial society do no harm to our planet?How do we continue industrial growth while preserving the resources our grandchildren and...

The North American Free Trade Area: Impacts and Implications

The North American Free Trade Area (NAFTA) - comprising the United States, Canada, and Mexico - will soon come into being as the world's largest trading bloc, directly challenging the growing primacy of the European Community and the Japan-East Asia bloc.

Soft Measurement: A Vital Ingredient in Quality Improvement

During the early days of the quality revolution, when quality improvement efforts were focused primarily on manufacturing, managers measured hard facts - errors, rejects, and production time - as a way to document tangible improvements in the production process.

Packaging: Meeting the Environmental Challenge

Packaging is the ultimate symbol of the 20th century's consumer culture. It protects what we buy and raises our standard of living. In developing countries, 30 to 50 percent of food shipments are spoiled because of inadequate packaging and distribution systems. In developed countries with more...

The Inevitability of Managed Trade

Pose the question to any audience, "How many here favor free trade and how many support protectionism or managed trade?" Inevitably, an overwhelming majority of hands are raised for free trade.

Product Quality in Transition

In the 1980s, many Western companies discovered Total Quality Management. They implemented quality programs, formed teams, thought about customer-supplier relationships, trained staff in Quality Function Deployment and Ishikawa techniques, and appointed quality vice presidents and quality planning...