During the flight to Dallas for the World Conference on Quality & Improvement recently, I had an opportunity to catch up on some reading. As I cracked the cover of the April Harvard Business Review, my eye immediately went to “Creating a Culture of Quality.” They had me at the first sentence… “In most industries, quality has never mattered more.” As a third-party quality assurance organization, we see this first-hand. The companies we assist who value quality are those that claim the competitive advantage and more often outperform their counterparts. This is true. Of course, this message is consistent within quality related publications we keep up with, but it is refreshing to see similar context included in a publication such as HBR as well. Researchers conducted a “culture of quality” survey that yielded interesting results. Roughly 60% of those surveyed said they work in an environment without a culture of quality. Many of the traditional strategies used to increase quality – monetary incentives, training, and sharing of best practices, for instance – have little effect. For every 5,000 employees moving from the bottom to the top quintile would save a company $67m annually. In the article, there are Four Essentials of Quality identified that the researchers concluded “actually predict a culture of quality”: Leadership Emphasis Message Credibility Peer Involvement Employee Ownership For additional information, check out the full article.