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Understanding Total Quality Management (TQM)

by Ron Kurtus (updated 17 March 2023)

Total Quality Management (TQM) is a combination of quality and management tools aimed at increasing business and reducing losses due to wasteful practices. An important part of TQM is its a philosophy toward continually improving your business and products.

A number of quality initiatives have arrived since TQM started in the 1980s. The most recent is the Six Sigma program, which is quite similar to TQM. We follow the Kurtusian philosophy of TQM that was developed for the U.S. Air Force space programs.

There is a need for people who will champion the cause of improving the way business is done through effectively implementing TQM within a company. Your knowledge and skills in this area can help advance your career while improving your business.

TQM Contents

Basic principles

Basic Principles of Total Quality Management

Satisfy customer

Satisfy Your Customers to Increase Business and Reduce Losses

Dealing with Customer Complaints

Everyone is Not a Customer in TQM

Get good work and supplies

Getting Quality Goods From Your Suppliers

Reduce waste and failures

Inspection Methods to Fulfill Quality Requirements

Prevent Mistakes with Poka-Yoke

Variability Reduction in Manufacturing


Case Study of Empowering Civil Servant Secretaries

Quality in the Restaurant Business

Applying TQM in a Church

Using TQM for a Competitive Advantage in Business - Competition section

Presentations and reports


TQM Plan for Martin Marietta Electronics and Missile Group

GE Astro Space Engineering Process Improvement


Quality Improvement Report for the State of Wisconsin


TQM in U.S. Air Force Systems Command (AFSC)

U.S. Air Force Space Systems Division Total Quality Booklet

Air Force Weapons Lab TQM Continuous Improvement Plan

TQM in the Strategic Defense Initiative Organization (SDIO)

Three Phase Approach to TQM in the Air Force's SDI Programs - with audio

Strategic Defense Initiative TQM Newsletters


TQM Resources

ISO 9000

Succeed in Business

Succeed in eCommerce

Survey results

See results of survey questions

My books

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