ERIC Number: ED277938
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Quality Circle Effectiveness as a Function of Upper-Management Support, Circle Initiation, and Collar Color.
Tang, Thomas Li-Ping; And Others
Japanese management practices have attracted much interest in the United States. The use of quality circles (QCs) common in Japan, has been considered a promising approach to improving Americn workers' productivity. A quality circle is made up of workers from the same group who meet to discuss quality problems, recommend solutions, and implement improvements. In-process goals of QCs include immediate feedback, improvements, and modifications of policies; end-product goals deal with cost-savings, improved quality, and higher productivity. This study examined the in-process goals of 47 quality circles over a 3-year period in a quasi-experimental field study in a Tennessee fabrication and assembly plant. The dependent variables were the quantity of QC presentations and the speed of problem-solving. These two dependent variables were examined as a function of upper-management support (high versus low), QC initiation (management-initiated versus self-initiated), and collar color (white versus blue) in a 2 x 2 x 2 multiple analysis of variance. The results showed that QCs with a high level of upper-management support solved their problems significantly faster than did those QCs with a low level of support. Management-initiated QCs solved their problems significantly faster and solved more problems than did self-initiated QCs. Self-initiated QCs with a low level of upper-management support had a slower speed of problem-solving. Further, self-initiated QCs with white collar workers also had a slower speed of problem-solving. A six-page reference list and three data tables conclude the document. (ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Portions of this paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Southeastern Psychological Association (32nd, Orlando, FL, March 26-29, 1986).