Aims principally to identify the main issues relating to the strategic impact and application of total quality management (TQM). Uses a grounded theory inductive research methodology involving 19 case study organisations. In this approach, the deep rich data gained through the dialogue and story telling, is critical to the research study findings. Therefore, the findings are presented largely in the form of transcript quotes and coding analysis. Furthermore, the grounded theory approach enables simple constructs to be created and developed throughout the research discourse. The findings indicate that largely bureaucratic approaches to TQM and strategy exist without proper integration of employee and customer feedback. TQM mainly impacted the strategy process at the objective setting level, forming a strategicoperational divide, reflecting a tactical emphasis for TQM deployment. Thus, there is a need for TQM to be considered from a philosophical level rather than simply as an operational tool. A considerable gap was found to exist between organisational rhetoric, in relation to strategy and TQM, in comparison to organisational practice.
- Operations management
- Total quality management