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Part I: Understanding Facilitation > Background: The Transformation of U.S. Ind...

Chapter 1. Background: The Transformation of U.S. Industry

A transformation has been under way in American organizations since the early 1980s. This movement originates with an obsession for satisfying customer needs through quality products and services. Total Quality Management (TQM) is a common name for this approach, although other common acronyms are Total Quality Control (TQC), Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI), and Quality and Productivity Development (QPD).

This movement toward Total Quality Management has its roots in the continued trend toward globalization. As U.S. firms met growing international competition, they rediscovered that “quality” was the essential criteria of business success. Unfortunately, while relying upon hierarchical organizations led by command and control or authoritarian leaders, U.S. organizations found it increasingly difficult to compete. The transformation has manifested itself in leadership vision and culture, organizational restructuring, leadership style refinement, increased measurement of results, empowerment of workers, and an obsession with satisfying customers.


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