Document Type

Closed Project

Publication Date

Spring 1993


Richard R. Deckro

Course Title

Total Quality Management II

Course Number

EMGT 510


The definition of a small business varies depending on the source. The dividing line between small and large is between 500 and 1500 people. It is important for small businesses to implement TQM because of strong competition and pressure from their customers. Most small businesses still use inspection methods to find defects instead of TQM methods to "eliminate defects. Small businesses feel they are at a disadvantage in implementing TQM due to lack of resources. Many small businesses that have implemented TQM successfully feel that the small number of employees is a big advantage. This is due to quick communications and fewer people to train. The key elements to implement TQM in a small company are: Management commitment, identifying customer needs, process control and continuous improvement. Small businesses in the implementation process of TQM should seek the assistance of large business customers. Large businesses should not impose their quality systems on to the small company, but should instead work with the small business to implement a system that meets their needs and capabilities.


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