Congratulations to Craig R. Waters for "Quality Begins at Home" (August). As an INC. 500 consulting firm working primarily with Fortune 500 companies, we find that most companies, large or small, share a glaring misconception regarding quality. They believe it can be improved simply by sending managers to a motivational program. On its own, such training comes up short in at least two ways.
First, when newly motivated managers return to work, they can quickly get bogged down by the majority of co-workers who haven't yet caught the quality fever. Second, for a program to work, it must be tailored to the environment in which it will be implemented. Quality initiatives that are mismatched with the company's operational systems and businss objectives simply wither on the vine, no matter how ardently they are supported by motivated managers.
The quest for quality begins with management's good intentions. Unfortunately, too often that is also where it ends.