ERIC Number: ED433899
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997
Why Is TQM Not a Part of the Community College Vocabulary?
This article reviews the basic principles of Total Quality Management (TQM) and how they can be applied to the administration of community colleges. TQM is a customer (student)-focused, continuous-improvement, quality-oriented way of thinking about all aspects of operating an organization that is shared and practiced by all employees (faculty and staff) as they think and work together. For TQM to be successful the following concepts must be present: leadership, information and analysis, strategic quality planning, human resource use, quality assurance of services, quality results, and customer satisfaction. While TQM spells out exactly what is needed in the administrative structure to succeed, it acknowledges that the organization must be motivated to implement not only a new program but also a new way of thinking and must be willing to take the time to learn the program through training. All members of the organization must desire quality and believe that it is possible to achieve; they must be willing to learn and change; they must be operating in an environment of trust, and they must have a sense of ownership in the institution. This article explains the obstacles community colleges face in trying to implement TQM, and provides specific suggestions for overcoming these difficulties, including an assessment of the college mission and personnel. (CB)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A