ASQ Influential Voices Contribution: Future of Quality - Evolution or Revolution?

In his August 6 post, ASQ CEO, Bill Troy compares his perspective on Quality to that of De Tocqueville’s perspective on democracy.  Bill Troy writes, “In 1835, Alexis De Tocqueville, a French political writer, wrote his classic work, Democracy in America.  His observations about America were a fascinating window into the times and issues of the day.” Bill Troy adds, “Part of the power of his observations was his detached perspective.  He could stay above the intense political currents, prejudices, and passions of the times and report on what he saw and heard.”  New to Quality, Bill Troy brings a similar perspective which affords him a certain amount of objectivity.
One of Bill Troy’s early observations is that he believes there are “two very distinct views about the future of quality.”  Some, according to Bill Troy, view the future of Quality as evolutionary, while others see it as revolutionary.

Unlike Bll Troy, many of today’s quality practitioners do not have a detached perspective with regard to Quality. We are in the trenches fighting the battles, which make it very difficult to know whether we are winning or losing the war.  Bill Troy’s post, nonetheless, gives us the opportunity to pause and reflect on the future of Quality. The power of our observations is our continued and prolonged engagement with those who still must be convince of the virtues we hold dear. Those who must be convinced are many; convince one and you find two more waiting in the wings to be converted.

Evolutionary or Revolutionary?

My entrenched perspective is that Quality has been a battle; more revolution than evolution. My prediction for the future of Quality is that it will be an ever-evolving revolution. The battles will continue and I expect we will win more than we lose. What this revolution really needs to evolve are new and improved tools and techniques (new QBoK) and/or innovative and creative ways of using the tools and techniques we already have. This revolution also needs a community of thought leaders to generate and disseminate the new and/or improved Quality body of knowledge (QBoK).

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