Archive for April, 2011

Crosby’s Four Absolutes Updated

April 27, 2011

Before Phil Crosby most people thought quality had to cost more. Crosby revolutionized Quality Management by showing how zero defects can be delivered with many of his clients and in his book Quality Without Tears.

Others have now showed us that exactly fulfilling customer requirements is equal to lowest cost. A failure to fulfill requirements is now called a nonconformity.

Accordingly we have updated Phil’s four absolutes of QM here:

1. Quality means conformity to customer requirements (although this often was misheard as conformity to specifications)

2. Invest in prevention (the system helps people to understand customer requirements and get their work right the first time)

3. Never accept failure to meet requirements as inevitable (invest in prevention instead using 80:20 [or 50:4] to prioritize removal of root causes)

4. Measure the costs of appraisal and other consequences of not preventing nonconformity (known as PONC [the price management chooses to pay for nonconformity] then see 2 above)

Some say he upset statisticians when he said they could not spell zero!

Crosby’s message is simple and effective. It appeals to leaders and general managers and makes no attempt to keep quality professionals employed doing QA.

These days organizations eliminate the causes of nonconformity from their systems before (and occasionally after) making or delivering their services and other products.

Indeed our clients run their management systems to reduce the cost of poor quality while creating more successful customers.