“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” – Galatians 6:7

This column is inspired by an invitation to Kuala Lumpur to participate and take a lead in an initiative on 14th-15th June 2010, from the CEO of the Commonwealth Partnership of Technology Management in London, on behalf of the Chairman Tan Sri Datuk Dr Ahmad Tajuddin Bin Ali and the Chief Executive of Standards Malaysia.  At this two day meeting the Smart Partnership initiative on ‘Achieving Market Access and Sustainability through the Development of National Strategies for Quality and Standards’, will be launched.

The essence of this initiative is to find ways and means to enhance market access and trade but also to achieve quality inclusion through Smart Partnership, with involvement of Ministers of Trade, investment and trade agencies and the leading private sector players.

Unfortunately, I am too intensively involved with leadership of the team, both managing and also laying a successful foundation for the enterprises currently involved in Bimventures in Barbados, at this time, to be able to take off to “the other side of the world”.  I am aware from previous experiences that, even though the meeting is only two days and the cross cultural communication opportunity is awesome,  there is an average of two days travel time each way plus the recovery from the jet lag phenomenon, and these have caused me not to accept the invitation on this occasion.  As a compromise, I have decided to share my thoughts on the subject in this column.

The CBET Shepherding model is currently being rolled out in Barbados www.bimventures.com as a smart partnership with government and the private sector in order to stimulate economic development, one successful business after another. This model, of course, is generic and can be applied to any emerging nation in the world in its quest for economic development.

At the outset of the practical interaction with entrepreneurs of Bimventure enterprises, the importance of the CBET shepherding model to the sustainable success of enterprises was confirmed.  These recent experiences gained by our Bimventures team have endorsed the need to lay a sound foundation of total quality management in each enterprise.  Sometimes there is resistance by the entrepreneur who, quite naturally, may want to be possessive about the development of his/her idea but we have been careful to point out that: whereas, “my idea and my money may be managed as ‘my’ business”, in contrast “my idea and other people’s money must be managed as ‘our’ business”.  We therefore remind the entrepreneur that it will not necessarily be an easy journey butWhat a person plants, he will harvest; provided that he pays attention to total quality management at every step along the way”.

  1. Edward Deming was born in the US in 1900 and died soon after delivering a public lecture in 1994. He focused on “statistical quality control and total quality management”. Joseph Juran was born in Romania in 1904 and eight years later he emmigrated to the US with his family. He focused on “managing for quality” and died in 2008.  Deming and Juran were two total quality management gurus who, after the second world war, had a major role to play in Japan’s change of focus from becoming a military power to becoming an economic one. Lyndsay Swinton’s website www.mftrou.com – Management for the rest of us – reveals profiles of Deming and Juran.

Incidentally, the longevity of these gurus prompts me to interject with congratulations to our mother Rita Gwendolyn Cozier-Springer who celebrated her 96th birthday last Friday.

In 1982 Edwards Deming published “Out of the Crisis” identifying 14 points for management which, if applied, would enable Japanese manufacturing efficiencies to be realised. They are summarised as follows: (1)Create constancy of purpose and continual improvement – long term planning must replace short term reaction; (2) Adopt the Japanese philosophy (“zero defects”)  – by management and workers alike; (3) Do not depend on (quality) inspection – build quality into the product and process; (4) Choose quality suppliers over low cost suppliers – to minimise variation in raw materials and supply; (5) Improve constantly – to reduce variation in all aspects e.g. planning, production, and service; (6) Training on the job – for workers and management, to reduce variation in how job is done; (7) Leadership not supervision – to get people to do a better job, not just meet targets; (8) Eliminate fear – encourage two-way communication, encourage employees to work in the organisation’s interest; (9) Break down internal barriers – departments in an organisation are “internal customers” to each other and must work together; (10) Eliminate slogans (exhortations) – “processes make mistakes not people”. Management harassment of workers will create bad relations if no effort is made to improve processes; (11) Eliminate numerical targets – management by objectives (targets) encourages low quality; (12) Remove barriers to worker satisfaction – including annual appraisals; (13) Encourage self improvement and education for all; and (14) Everyone is responsible for continual improvement in quality and productivity – particularly top management.

As far as Japan is concerned, the rest is history. We must now apply these principles to our Bimventures enterprises and monitor the changes with the passage of time. Total quality management must be applied to all systems of the enterprise including: governance, marketing, production, administration, bookkeeping and accounting, ICT, HR and finance.  Increasing success will boost the viability of our Venture Capital fund thus encouraging greater and greater investment and ultimate economic sustainability.