What the heck is TQM?  It stands for Total Quality Management and it was very big in the 80’s.  The “quality” way of doing business started in Japan..it took the US awhile to catch on but when it did, all companies wanted to get on board.  My father, while he didn’t invent TQM, he was the spokesperson for it in many circles.  He, David Luther, was the big guy who represented Corning Inc. around the world and talked about all the processes put into place by the company and how each and every one of those steps were effective.  Effectivness lead to a happy customer which lead to more orders which of course increased revenue!

Some of the elements of TQM consisted of departments working in teams to solve problems.  These teams were also asked to make present systems more efficient and effective.  If a memeber of the team wasn’t producing, the team would figure out what to do with that member, not the management.  Peer pressure lead people to a higher production rate.

There was also a big element of listening to the customer and hearing what their needs were and where the good and the bad rested.  Companies were taking time out to meet with their customer and the customer was both internal, the employees, and external, the buyer of the product or service and the vendors who partnered with the company.

Listening, communicating, and acting on the information put TQM ahead of the curve in its day.  My father was TQM and I am the daughter of TQM.

Blogging is very similar to TQM.  Bloggers are big communicators: they talk and they listen.  While every blog works on its own, bloggers can come together to update and/or correct information…Dan Rather’s story was blown away by bloggers and hence his career was down the tubes, Dell was also affected by the blogging community as well.  The blogging community also polices itself so peer pressure affects what people say about products, services or ideas…honesty must rule or you will be eliminated from the active blogging world. 

Blogging is a huge tool available for corporate bloggers who want to listen to their customers and act on their wishes.  If a car isn’t selling, go to the blogs to see what the car enthusiasts are saying (Chrysler does this often).  If a vendor isn’t quite working out, check out the blogs for what others are saying or check out their blog to see what the corporate culture is like.

Blogging is an available tool that may be new but it is effective.  Why not use all of the tools necessary to do better business?  This is what the followers of TQM did and now this is what we can do through corporate blogging.