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Total quality management (TQM) involves management of culture and attitude of organizations to ensure customers are provided with products and services that satisfy their needs and expectations (The Eight Elements of TQM, 2012). To successfully implement total quality management, organizations need to consider the following eight key elements: ethics, integrity, trust, training, teamwork, leadership, recognition, and communication. This paper discusses how Coca-Cola Company successfully implemented the eight key elements of TQM.
Coca-Cola Company has established its Code of Business Conduct that guides its overall conduct requiring “honesty and integrity” in everything (Governance and Ethics, 2012). It requires all its associates and directors to read and understand the code and ensure it is followed both in the work place and community at large. It has established Ethics and Compliance Committee that comprises of senior management team which ensures compliance with the codes and disciplines those who violate the codes.
To ensure that every stakeholder commits to and understands the Code of Business Conduct, the company offers online training to all associates at least once a year. Newly employed associates receive the training upon employment.
Integrity and Trust
Coca-Cola Company’s Code of Business Conduct slogan reads “Acting with Integrity Around the Globe” (Code of Business Conduct, 2008). It is committed to ensuring accuracy in all its business and financial records. This is not only the accounts of department’s responsibility, but also every stakeholder. It also ensures integrity when dealing with others. When transacting any business with governments, for example, there must be prior approval from the Company’s legal counsel and ensuring that any payment is reflected in the Company’s books of accounts.
By maintaining the highest standards of quality, integrity, and providing excellent products and services, the Company earns trust both from the public and customers. In addition, the Company complies with the law and respects cultures in societies where it runs business. To maintain trust, it developed the Supplier Guiding Principles which directs suppliers in their operations.
Coca-Cola Company recognizes the importance of training its human resource in order to maintain high quality standards. The Company provides four types of training: skill, technical, leadership, and functional training (Recruitment and Selection Process and training and Development in Coca-Cola Company, 2011). Skill training provides employees with creative skills, communication skills, and other necessary skills which are beneficial for their survival. Technical training improves technical skills of employees, leadership training provides leadership skills to both present and future leaders, while functional training improves employee’s knowledge by getting degrees and diplomas in their areas of expertise.
The Company also offers training to its associates on its Code of Business Conduct to ensure commitment and understanding of the codes.
The Company uses teams both at the management and department levels to accomplish its projects and daily business operations. This enables the Company to get better solutions to its problems within a very short time, hence satisfying customer needs quicker. Team work has also made workers bring up their ideas as they feel they are part and parcel of the Company.
Coca-Cola Company organization structure is arranged in a top-down manner. The top management develops strategic objectives and outline values that direct their juniors. Supervisors understand TQM and ensure their subordinates work towards achieving it. Generally, the Company has developed a culture that enables its leaders to ensure its strategies, values, objectives, and goals are achieved.
The Company has created different channels of communication and a common understanding between sender and receiver. Communication is made between different stakeholders including management, employees, customers, suppliers, and shareholders. It has implemented downward, upward, and sideways communication that ensures every stakeholder is updated with the TQM process.
Coca-Cola Company has a well-defined procedure of detecting and recognizing employees. Supervisors act as agents in determining employee’s efforts, and the company rewards such efforts through promotions or any other means it deems suitable. In doing this, productivity, quality, and self-esteem of employees are improved.
The Coca-Cola Company manages its TQM by successfully implementing the eight key TQM elements i.e. ethics, integrity, trust, training, teamwork, leadership, recognition, and communication.
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