‘Quality’ has been an buzzword in business for years now. Some, like GE’s Jack Welch and Demming, would even put it at the heart of a business’ ultimate aim.
Yet, just paralleling Leadership and Management’s own dichotomy, ‘Quality’ seems to have its own divergence. On one hand ‘quality’ is the ‘absence of defects’ (the elimination of downside artefacts, one could say). The tools here are method and processes and techniques like Six Sigma. On the other hand, ‘quality’ is an aspirational characteristic which makes the product special and distinctive. Or as Hugh puts it, “Being total f*cking amazing.”
Leaders envision friggin’ amazing Purple Cows; Managers eradicate defects. Both together create true Quality.